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Students' Mental Health

Navigating the Silent Crisis: Exploring Indian, Students’ Mental Health

Students’ Mental Health and Suicides

Sub headline: Indias young Population thrive to struggle with mental health

In the vast tapestry of India’s educational landscape, a growing shadow looms over the vibrant and dynamic student population. Mental health issues among Indian students have surged, casting a dark cloud that is difficult to ignore.As per a 2021 WHO report on the mental health of adolescents, it is the fourth leading cause of death in people aged 15 to 29 in the world.
India’s National Crime Record Bureau Data 2021 says that 8% of Indian students die by suicide that year, whereas The Lancet, the world’s highest impact medical journal report by Dr. Laxmi Vijaykumar says that number is much higher and that the majority of suicide cases in India, accounting for 37%, are not registered.
Dr. Himanshu Sharma, a psychologist from Kota, a city in the northern Indian state of Rajasthan known for its educational excellence, is a witness to the academic distress that this city holds, where millions of students from all over the country come to prepare for the premium institutes and get lost somewhere in the cutthroat competition. He said, “Students who come here are mostly adolescents at a time when psychological and bodily changes are at their peak; students are unable to openly discuss these with their parents.”
According to Indian government statistics data collected by the Static Data Collection Body of India, MoSPI, India is the world’s youngest country, with 52.9% of its population under the age of 30, but the mental health of its youth is a barrier to the country’s development.
In the Meantime a 2021 report by WHO says, the burden of mental health problems in India is 2,443 disability-adjusted life years (DALYs) per 100,000 population, with a suicide rate of 21.1 per 100,000 population. The economic loss due to mental health conditions is estimated to be USD 1.03 trillion between 2012 and 2030.
National Crime Records Bureau (NCRB) data on suicides in India says, Between January 1, 1995, and December 31, 2019, more than 1.7 lakh students committed while nearly 52% of these were reported in the last decade, with the remaining 85,824 reported between 1995 and 2008.
Dr. went on to say, “In India, they teach you to be a worker, so there is a lot of pressure; sometimes institutes feed them more than their syllabus, but nobody teaches how to handle pressure. Also, students have no backup plan; they feel this is the last choice they have, and if they fail, they feel their only option is to get selected or die.”
If we go by the NCRB 2021 report, then 67,259 of the young population below the age of 30 died by suicide, and the reason behind suicide, according to experts, is mostly said to be mental health, depression, and drug abuse.
“We have a lot of pressure here,” Komal Kamtariya, a management student at IIM Rohtak, a top management institute in India, said. “First, we face a lot of pressure to get into such institutes and then to survive here; many times I could not even sleep properly for a week. These tight schedules make our social life nil and sometimes tend to make us alone. Corporate life in India feeds zero work-life balance. Since childhood, they taught us to be labourers and parrots, while in foreign lands education is based on cognitive learning and overall development.
Komal further told, “We do not have the option of choosing a career of our choice and believe that there are only three or four respectable career options, such as being a doctor, engineer, or manager, whereas in other countries, even serving Burger King receives equal respect; India has more to improve overall in society, education, and personal level.”
At a UNESCO global publication launch in Delhi, Union Health Minister Shri Mansukh Mandaviya emphasised the importance of mental health “It is inextricably linked to physical health and wellness, and it is an essential part of our traditional knowledge,” he said. The minister also stressed on the importance of including an understanding of mental health in teachers’ curricula, as teachers are a pillar of support for children. “The role of parents, families, and communities in listening to children and encouraging them to talk about mental health issues aids in early intervention”
Finally, the alarming statistics about Indian students’ mental health and suicide rates demand immediate attention. The figures are more than just statistics; they are a stark reflection of the difficulties confronting a generation caught between societal pressures and personal ambitions.

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