Latino/Hispanic Adolescents Misinformed on Anxiety

The amount of Hispanic/Latino teens who struggle with anxiety is astonishing. Mostly because those individuals who are coping with anxiety sometimes do not know it. They do not know they are “different.” They do not know they have a mental disability, and they might just think they are stressed or they have a hard time making decisions. This is because the amount of Hispanic/ Latino teens who know about anxiety, the effects, and how to get help are not very high. I believe this to be because they are being misinformed, by not only their families, but by themselves as well.

In regards to adolescents in the Latino/ Hispanic community, what are some negative implications that might cause anxiety? Some of the causes could be the stress these adolescents are going through. Indications that follow this theory would be these youths crossing the border and coming into the United States. Not just this act itself, but their home lives as well. These adolescents are not risking their lives just because they want to and they want a “vacation,” they are coming into the United States because their home life are not good. They are looking forward to a better life, and the only way to do this is to risk their life, leave the life they have known all along, and pick up and move. My father at the age of seventeen moved out of his home town of Cuxpala, Zacatecas, with only the clothes on his back to start a new life. A better life than the one he had lived before. He did not have anyone with him, any money, any other clothes. He had an address and a friend’s home he would be staying at. Just the thought alone, moving not knowing where you are going is bad enough. I found it challenging to move to San Francisco when I already had a home, and I was with both of my parents. This is one of the most severely drastic events in adolescents lives that is a cause of anxiety within the hispanic community.

Along with this idea, there is also questions regarding how these individuals define anxiety. Whether or not they are accurately defining anxiety, the causes of anxiety, and how anxiety affects all individuals differently. I believe there is a massive disconnect between teens who are accurately informed and knowledgeable on the subject. The National Institution of Mental Health states Hispanics children have the least amount of formal education among the Latino community. Which leads to my theory stating hispanic teens are not informed on mental illness, even though there are individuals who are struggling with anxiety.

Should the misinformation of anxiety within youths of the Latino/ Hispanic community, be ignored? No. It should not. All individuals should have the right to be informed, and know why they deal with things differently. Why they question everything they do differently than others around them. Hispanic teens should be taught by their schools, or their family members.

This is important because it is not only frightening, but alarming to be dealing with something as serious as anxiety, but to be coping with it alone. As I said before, I believe youths are having a severe challenges working out these mental problems they are having. Learning to deal with the symptoms, the effects, and how they go about their daily life activities. HCHS/SOL researched anxious-depression, and how it is a constellation of symptoms, almost regularly encountered among hispanic/ Latino community members. Authors Camacho, Gonzalez, Buelna,, discuss a need to study how anxious depression presents itself among Hispanic/Latinos of different backgrounds. Along with this research, Camacho, Gonzalez, Buelna,, uncovered the amount Hispanic/Latinos from different backgrounds, 16,064 individuals, participated in this study to determine the amount of Hispanic Community Health Study/ Study of Latinos had anxiety. They theorized that of those 16,064 teens, would be put into three different categorizes. Group one had low anxiety/high depression. Group two had high anxiety/low depression. Group three had a combination of anxiety and depression.

All in all, theories on the causes, and implications of hispanic/ Latino individuals who try hard to combat the effects of anxiety are at times misinformed on their mental health illnesses. These ideas need to be changed to help teens who are struggling grow and be more comfortable with themselves. We know they are lasting affecting teens face, and from researches like Camacho and Gonzalez, we know there are ways to inform them.

Camacho, A., Gonzalez, P., Buelna, C., Emory, K, T., Talavera, G, A., Castaneda, S, F., Espinoza, R., Howard, A, G., Perreira, K, M., Isasi, C, R., Daviglus, M, L., Roesch, S, C,. (2015). Anxious-depression among hispanic/latinos from different backgrounds: results from the hispanic community health study/study of latinos. Soc Psychiatry Psychiatr Epidemiol. 50:1669–1677

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