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In Gdańsk, 60 percent of surveyed students say they are unhappy. “The problem is nationwide”

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60 percent of students are unhappy and 80 percent say they are tired and lack energy. These are the conclusions of research conducted by the Youth Council of the City of Gdańsk among students. Young people face many problems, often not knowing who to turn to for help.

If you are experiencing emotional problems and would like advice or support, here you will find a list of organizations offering professional help. In a situation of immediate threat to life, call 997 or 112.

Young people are tired, discouraged and unhappy – they say it themselves. The survey among students of older grades of primary and secondary schools was conducted by the Youth Council of the City of Gdańsk. They submitted the results and conclusions to the city authorities.

“About 50 percent of them have mental health difficulties”

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– There is really a lot to do, at every stage. This is from school to psychiatry. A lot has to change for this to go in the right direction, says Oskar Stabno from the Youth Assembly of the Pomeranian Voivodeship.

The problem is nationwide, experts warn. – I personally estimate, based on some research, but also from my own experience working with teenagers, that about 50 percent of them have various mental health difficulties – says Tomasz Bilicki, psychotherapist and crisis interventionist.

In a study conducted in Gdańsk, 80 percent of students declared that they felt tired, deprived of energy and discouraged in the last month. 60 percent said they were unhappy. The fact that young people talk about their problems is an important signal, experts emphasize.

87 percent of students would not seek help in the event of a mental crisis

– It is a report showing young people's awareness that problems may occur, but also their wondering and searching for where to seek help. This report doesn't scare me. He shows what we adults can and should do. What awareness, knowledge and sense of security do children lack – comments Professor Małgorzata Lipowska from the Institute of Psychology of the University of Gdańsk.

SEE ALSO: In the Senate on mental health problems of children and adolescents. “There is no more important and urgent topic”

87 percent of students answered that in the event of a mental crisis they would not seek help anywhere. – Children or teenagers come to the clinic with their parents and it turns out that the child has suffered for several months, sometimes even for several months – says Dr. Aleksandra Lewandowska, national consultant in the field of child and adolescent psychiatry.

Those who would ask for support would first turn to friends or family and caregivers. Only then to specialists, and finally to a psychologist or school counselor and teachers, many of whom would probably like to help students but do not have the means or opportunity to do so.

Work is underway at the Ministry of Education to help young people in mental crisis

– The question is simple. Is it possible to support someone without knowing exactly how to do it and without support for this “helper”? Where is supervision for teachers? Where is the crisis intervention center that would provide support to education workers? There are no such places, Bilicki points out.

The Ministry of Education is working on increasing the number of psychologists in schools – assures the Minister of Education. It also points out the mistakes of its predecessors.

Depression should not be ignored and you should seek help. “I didn't know it was a disease”Stefania Kulik/Fakty po Południu TVN24

– No work was done to support young people in mental crisis. On the contrary. I often feel that thoughtlessly spoken words by high government officials, including, unfortunately, my predecessors, caused young people to doubt institutions and ministries, and therefore also the school system – comments Barbara Nowacka, Minister of National Education.

The causes of youth problems are different – problems at school or in their personal lives, but also problems at home. That's why it's worth starting to solve children's problems by taking a closer look at yourself, says psychologist Dr. Urszula Sajewicz-Radtke to adults.

How to support young people who feel unhappy?

– Like on an airplane. Who do we put the oxygen mask on first? We put it on ourselves first, and then on our children. If we are in a bad mental state, if we do not have insight, if we do not understand our emotions, if we are depressed, anxious or otherwise, we do not have the tools to help our children – says Sajewicz-Radtke.

Although not every case requires long-term therapy, students should feel that they can count on support at every crisis moment.

SEE ALSO: “I approached every simple thing with fear. Getting out the door was a problem”

– Support that can sometimes be a one-off conversation, but where? As close as possible to this young man and in the least stigmatizing environment possible, i.e. at school. This is what we should do. Real, well-functioning care from a school psychologist and an educational psychologist – says Lipowska.

– The problem is not sadness, it is not fear. The problem is sadness and fear in loneliness. Very often I hear the answer that there are no adults among them who could listen and accept them – comments Bilicki.

Help can be sought at crisis intervention centers throughout the country. There are also special hotlines available – both for children, adolescents and adults, where you can receive professional help free of charge.

Author:Grzegorz Jarecki

Main photo source: TVN24

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