With the rise of social pressures that come with external expectations from factors such as from school and social media, there has been an increasing focus on mental health in millennials and younger people. This week, Dispatches revealed that 68% of 16-30 year olds think they have had or are currently experiencing a mental health problem and also that there has been a 45% increase in referrals of young people to mental health services in the past two years.

Despite this focus on mental health in millennials, research from Smart TMS on attitudes towards depression and its treatments shows that many millennials are still struggling to get the right treatment. In a survey conducted across 2000 Brits, Smart TMS found the following:

  • 37% of millennials have experienced symptoms of what they think is undiagnosed depression for many years
  • 27% of millennials have left a long-term mental health issue untreated over many years in order to avoid prescription drugs
  • 21% of millennials have used anti-depressants but they have not helped their mental health at all, or if they did, it was sporadic
  • 34% of millennials sometimes wonder if they are suffering from undiagnosed depression, as activities that used to make them happy do not make them happy anymore

Dispatches also found that in the last year, 55,210 under 18s were prescribed antidepressants. This is the biggest yearly increase in antidepressant prescriptions for the age group since 2015. Despite a range of treatments on offer for mental health conditions from CBT to antidepressants, it is clear that young people are increasingly suffering from poor mental health and the research from Smart TMS shows that many are struggling to find the right treatment.