Mental, physical and social health, are vital strands of life that are closely interwoven and deeply interdependent. Defining health as physical, mental and social well being, A.V. Shah has expressed that mental health is “the most essential and inseparable component of health. There are number of dimensions, which contribute to positive health like, spiritual, emotional, vocational, philosophical, cultural, socio-economic, environmental, educational and nutritional besides the physical, mental and social dimension. Thus, health is multidimensional. Although these dimensions function and interact with one another, each has its own nature.
Mental health is a positive concept related to the individual’s social, emotional, and psychological well being. It is a psychological state of a man who is functioning at a satisfactory level of passionate and behavioral adjustment. The concept of mental health is culturally defined, but generally relates to the enjoyment of life, ability to cope with daily stresses, sorrows and sadness, the fulfillment of goal and potential and a sense of connection to others. Therefore mental health is an important aspect in individual’s well being and health in general.
Adolescence is a period of change in attitude and behavior, develops heightened emotionality, outlook, interests pattern and roles the social group expects them to play. Psychologically it is that period of life when an individual becomes integrated into the society of adults, the age when the child no longer feels that he or she is below the level of his/ her elders but equal at least in right. It is a period of rapid change and time of searching personal identity. This stage is called as the period of “storm and stress”, during this stage adolescents face many psychological problems viz stress, physical stress, anxiety, aggression, undesirable complexes even sometimes depression and frustration. It may be due to self care, career, academics or other issues. These issues provide a major reason to researchers for conducting researches on the mental health on adolescents.
World Health Organization in 2001 reports that, mental health problems among children and adolescents have increased in recent years and are predicted to increase up to 50% by the year 2020. Therefore special effort should be made at individual as well as group level to improve the mental health care services. Mental health disorders among adolescents are often unrecognized and untreated. It is vary horrible that only 1 in 5 adolescents with mental health problems receive
proper mental health treatment.
Since past few years mental health disorders among children and adolescents have received a great significant attention in the field of research. However very less number of researchers are conducted in India which highlight the aspects of mental health and mental disorders among adolescents. Ranasinghe and Ramesh reported that 25.5% students had symptoms of depression, 8.6% reported loneliness, while as 7.8% reported anxiety related insomnia. Wani et al., found girl have high level of stress anxiety and depression then boys. Surapuramath reported that boys have better mental health than the girls. Seby, Chaudhury, and Chakraborty reported 26.7 % prevalence of mental disorders among elderly with predominant depressive disorders, dementia, generalized anxiety disorder, alcohol dependence and bipolar disorder.
Ghosh highlighted that parental deprivation has significant influence on mental health. She also found that non deprived adolescents had better mental health than parentally deprived adolescents. Similarly Hinshaw stated that friends and family plays an important role in maintaining stability and mental health among Adolescents among children. Reza found significant correlation between mental health and peer pressure of professional students. He also reported that early detection of mental health problems and peer pressures would promote better understanding about student’s mental health and peer pressures. Ranasinghe found that 25.5% had symptoms of depression, 8.6% reported loneliness while as 7.8% adolescent students reported anxiety related insomnia. Chandola found that men reported highly psychiatric morbidity (83.33%) then women (40%). Jayanthi, Thirunavukarasu and Rajkumar investigated that adolescents with academic stress have higher risk of depression than adolescents without academic stress. Sughayr and Ferwana highlighted that girls are more stressed than boys. While as Dhuria et al., researched that psychological problems were present more among boys than girls. Another study conducted by Sibnath et al., also shows that boys to be more anxious than girls. Findings also show that found that adolescents belonging to the middle socio economic group are more anxious than adolescents of high and low socio economic groups.
Sameer Ahmad Dar is Lecturer (Govt. College of Nursing M.A Road Srinagar) and can be reached at [email protected]