NAPERVILLE, Ill. — The CDC says suicide is the second leading cause of death for Americans ages 10 through 24, and the numbers continue to climb. Health officials are trying to provide the resources necessary to stop the trend.
Rep. Lauren Underwood brought this discussion on mental health to Neuqua Valley High School in Naperville Monday because of what happened late last year within the school’s community.
Two Neuqua Valley students took their lives within three weeks of one another, which prompted a number of students to go to the school board to demand more mental health resources.
Underwood, along with U.S. Surgeon General Dr. Vivek Murth who appeared virtually, listened for an hour to the group of students in a discussion on mental health and how it impacts younger Americans.
Twelve students took part in the discussion which focused on the prevalence of mental health issues among their peers and the stigma surrounding those struggles. The students also expressed the importance of having in-school resources, such as counselors and social workers, available and easily accessible.
At one point Murthy asked the students what they felt was driving the increased amount of mental health challenges for their age group. Several students cited social media and local societal pressures as primary causes for their feelings of anxiety.
Watch the entire discussion in the video below.