AWARE, supports the findings of recent report which highlights exam stress as among the top cause of suicide in teenagers
Experts at the University of Manchester investigated the suicides of 130 people aged under 20 in England between January 2014 and April 2015. The findings showed that contributory factors in the suicides included a physical health condition such as acne or ashthma; facing exams or exam results; bereavement and bullying.
Suicide is the biggest killer of people under the age of 35 in the UK with Northern Ireland having the highest rates of suicide in the UK.
Leading Northern Ireland mental health charity, AWARE, believe that exam stress and pressure has a big part to play in the mental health of teenagers.
Andrea Kearns is the Education and Training Manager in AWARE. Andrea said,
“Every day we meet young people who speak openly about the pressure of exams and what is expected from them, these pressure are at times so significant that it can lead to depression and suicide. Our young people are calling out for support and often talk about not knowing where to go, or who to tell because of the pressure they are feeling to succeed and what they think is expected from them.
“At AWARE, we believe that everyone has a duty of care to these young people to ensure that whilst they are studying for important exams, they are keeping mentally well. Being aware of the signs and symptoms of depression and talking to young people about mental illness is very important in ensuring a safe environment for them to open up if they are struggling.
“AWARE offer a Mood Matters Young People programme to 14-18 year olds in schools across Northern Ireland. The programmes provides them with the knowledge and skills to maintain good mental health and build resilience in order to better deal with problems and challenges.”
Tags: AWARE | Depression | exams | Mental Health | Mood Matters Young People | schools | stress | suicide | Young People