Every generation has had its major challenges to contend with, but the uniqueness of some of the issues Generation Z (those born in the mid-1990s and later) are dealing with, coupled with the fact that they're still in the throes of emotional development, are causing them quite a bit of stress. In fact, they seem to be far more stressed than their elders.
The American Psychological Association (APA) released a report in October detailing the findings of its 12th annual Stress in America survey, which was conducted in August 2018. Nearly 3,500 Americans over age 18 were surveyed, as well as an additional 300 15- to 17-year-olds.
The report showed that 27 percent of Gen Z members reported that their mental health was poor, compared with 15 percent of Millennials (Generation Y), 13 percent of Gen Xers and 7 percent of Baby Boomers. A whopping 90 percent of Gen Z members between the ages of 18 and 21 said they had experienced physical or emotional symptoms of stress, such as feeling depressed or sad, lack of interest or motivation, or feeling nervous or anxious. On the plus side, Gen Zers are also more likely than other generations to have received treatment or therapy from a mental health professional.
"This is the first time that we have been able to capture the voices of Gen Z, and our findings show that current issues in the national spotlight, such as mass shootings and sexual harassment, are significant stressors for this group," writes Lynn Bufka, PhD., Associate Executive Director of Practice Research and Policy at the APA in an email interview.