COVID Isolation, Racism, and Depression Everywhere
It comes as no surprise that COVID increases everybody's chances of depression. People are lonely. They are isolated, restricted, and their entire way of life is threatened. The pandemic takes lives. But our Black and Brown youth have another reason to be depressed and at record numbers. The insidious behavior of the very people who are supposed to protect them, savage murders of innocent Black women and men, and more lives taken during demonstrations. Add to that the stigma among Black Americans who seek mental health treatment. Misdiagnosis and bias in mental health care are prevalent for People of color; it discourages young Black and Brown people in the US from seeking help.
Depression is debilitating if unaddressed. The symptoms of depression are diverse and wide-ranging. The effects that being depressed have on the young body shouldn’t be underestimated. The immediate symptoms of depression affect them, but there are long-term effects for young bodies as well.
15 Symptoms of Depression in Young People
Be Aware - Look For These Symptoms
It is crucial for the entire country to address depression among Black and Brown people. Black Men are 20% more likely than white men to have a mental disorder. The population of Black Americans is around 13%; the percent of mental illness REPORTED is 16%. Black youth are more likely than whites to attempt suicide.
Our young Black people are the future of equality. They are the leaders of tomorrow. Starting the conversation about how important mental health is and that seeking help is okay is imperative. The risk of heart attack, stroke, and diabetes increases proportionately to depression in young adulthood. We and our country cannot afford to lose these future leaders to preventable illnesses and institutions that don't provide enough services. We cannot afford to lose them to jails and prisons, where there are an excessive amount of Black people with mental health issues.
Pay attention to the symptoms of depression in your friends, relatives, and loved ones. Support them and the feelings they are having. When you ask how someone is, listen to the answer. The earlier Black and Brown people are encouraged to seek help, the earlier and more quickly they can feel better. Thinking depression will just go away is a mistake. A broken leg doesn't heal on its own. How can a traumatized brain?
My name is Jamie. I'm blessed to be the Creative Content Manager for Stella's Girls, Inc. where our mission is to empower young women to become leaders and social advocates in their communities.