Younger generation burdened with anxiety and loneliness


In contrast to popular belief that older people are more likely to feel isolated and lonely, research from Aviva’s new Health Check UK Report reveals that 18-24 year olds in the UK are suffering significantly more from feelings of loneliness than any other generation.

Despite being continually connected through social networks, or perhaps because of this, just under half (48%) of 18-24 year olds said they often feel lonely, compared to a quarter (25%) of people aged over 65 and a UK average across all ages of 34%.

To mark Mental Health Awareness Week, which this year focuses on anxiety, data from the survey of 2,000 UK adults also shows that anxiety is highest amongst the younger generation.

Over a quarter (27%) of 18-24 year olds say they have suffered from anxiety in the last year, compared with 23% of 35-44 year olds and 11% of people aged over 65.

Young adults in the so-called ‘Generation Y’ have been often criticised for being a ‘me, me, me’ generation filled with expectation and a sense of entitlement, yet the report shows that a range of mental health problems are common and more prevalent in this age group.

Alongside anxiety, panic attacks are more common amongst 18-24 year olds than other age group, with around one in seven (14%) saying they have had an attack in the last year. Twice as many of the nation’s youngest adults, aged 18-24, are also experiencing stress compared to those aged 65 or over, with 40% saying they suffer from stress compared to 20%.

Depression is also experienced by a fifth of this age group, with 21% of 18-24 year olds coping with the condition in the last year.

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