Spike in number of students with mental health problems

The number of Hong Kong students with reported mental health problems shot past 1,400 in the last academic year, more than doubling from four years ago, with experts and educators blaming the 2019 protests and the COVID-19 pandemic, reports the South China Morning Post. The hardest hit were students in tertiary education institutions, where the number tripled from under 250 in 2018-19 to 776 this year.

Some feared that the actual number of young people with mental health issues could be much higher, while others said the rising trend might also reflect increased awareness and a greater willingness among young people to seek help.

Official figures provided to the legislature by the Education Bureau showed a 140% increase in the number of primary- to tertiary-level students with mental health issues over four school years. They included anxiety, depression, obsessive-compulsive disorder, psychotic, bipolar and oppositional defiant disorders, Tourette’s syndrome and eating problems. Mental illness registered the highest increase among all types of special education needs in Hong Kong.
Full report on the South China Morning Post site