June 16, 2024
Menral disorder

New Study Reveals the Impact of Peers on the Development of Mental Disorders in Adolescents

According to a groundbreaking study published in JAMA Psychiatry, mental disorders may spread among young people through their social networks, particularly within school classes. Researchers from the University of Helsinki, the Finnish Institute for Health and Welfare, the University of Jyväskylä, and the University of Manchester analyzed data from over 700,000 ninth-grade students in Finland. The students were followed for a median of 11 years after finishing ninth grade.

The researchers discovered that having a larger number of classmates diagnosed with mental disorders was linked to an increased risk of receiving a mental disorder diagnosis later in life. This association was most significant during the first year of follow-up. The findings remained consistent even after accounting for factors related to parents, schools, and residential areas.

The strongest links were observed for mood, anxiety Disorder, and eating disorders. Associate Professor Christian Hakulinen from the University of Helsinki explains, “Our study provides compelling evidence that the social environment plays a crucial role in the development of mental disorders during adolescence.”

This research represents the largest and most comprehensive investigation to date into the transmission of mental disorders within social networks. The findings underscore the importance of addressing mental health issues in schools and fostering supportive environments to help prevent the spread of mental disorders among young people.

1. Source: Coherent Market Insights, Public Source, Desk Research
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