Younger Americans Stressed by Election, School Closures

Pandemic-induced uncertainty along with a shaky economy, citizen unrest and a tumultuous presidential election are seriously threatening America’s mental health, according to a new national survey from the American Psychological Association.

Younger people in particular are experiencing elevated stress and reporting symptoms of depression, according to the latest Stress in America survey. The August study, which has been conducted annually since 2007, queried 3,409 adults over the age of 18 and 1,026 teenagers between 13 and 17.

More than 80% of the teens said they have been negatively impacted due to school closures as a result of the pandemic, and many of them say they’re less motivated to do schoolwork or engage in extracurricular activities.

Younger Americans Stressed by Election, School Closures

More than two-thirds of college students said the pandemic has made “planning for their future feel impossible.”

In addition, two-thirds of young adults born after 1997 say the 2020 U.S. presiden­tial election is a source of stress, and only 64% say they intend to vote in the election.

The coronavirus pandemic is a significant source of stress for nearly 80% of all Americans. And nearly one in five adults report that this stress is being released in the form of “snapping” or getting angry very quickly and unexpected mood swings. One in six report yelling at a loved one.

More than half of all adults report they were very restless or they felt so tired they just sat around and did nothing at some point in the past two weeks.

The APA survey data is bolstered by the latest Household Pulse Survey from the U.S. Census, which looks into how people’s lives have been impacted by the coronavirus pandemic. It found that during the Sept. 16-28 period, the majority of Americans under the age of 50 had feelings of being down, depressed, or hopeless at least several days a week.

Younger Americans Stressed by Election, School Closures

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