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Three million Vietnamese youths suffer from mental health problems

Update: November, 06/2018 - 05:00
About three million young Vietnamese people are affected by mental and psychological problems. — Photo

HCM CITY — About three million young Vietnamese people are affected by mental and psychological problems, but only 20 percent of them receive medical treatment while the rest resort to alcohol, tobacco and drug use, said a doctor in HCM City.

Nguyễn Song Chí Trung, from the Centre for Technology Transfer in HIV and Addiction Treatment under the Hồ Chí Minh City Medical University, spoke on the issue at a recent conference on mental health and drug use among youths.

According to Trung, there are many causes of drug use among young people such as peer pressure, being a victim of abuse, having divorced parents and living in poverty. Young people often come to drug as an experiment, but some turn into addicts.

Trung said the family plays a key role in keeping young people away from stimulants. Parents need to equip themselves with knowledge on early symptoms of mental health problems and help their children gain life skills to be able to deal with challenges at school and in society, he advised.

He recommended avoiding ostracism and discrimination against young drug users as the practice can hamper their treatment and rehabilitation.

According to the World Health Organisation, half of psychological disorders start at the age of 14, with most going unnoticed or untreated. 

A UNICEF study of mental health and psychosocial well-being among children and young people in Việt Nam this year showed the average rate of mental health problems among people aged 14 to 18 was 12 percent. The most common disorders were depression, anxiety disorder, loneliness and attention deficit hyperactivity disorder. — VNS

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