An ongoing survey of Ontario students in Grades 7 to 12 conducted for the Centre for Addiction and Mental Health (CAMH) shows that the number of students who rate their health as poor has significantly increased over the past two decades. The Ontario Student Drug Use and Health Survey (OSDUHS) Mental Health and Well-Being Report reveals important trends in mental health, physical health, and risk behaviors among Ontario students.

Elevated psychological distress has been a concern over the past decade, and the rate remains largely unchanged at 30%. “This includes feelings of depression, anxiety,and social dysfunction, said Dr. Robert Mann, CAMH Senior Scientist and lead investigator on the study. “Many of these students expressed feelings of unhappiness and experienced loss of sleep. This percentage represents about 327,000 students – a staggering number – and the rate increases with age. The good news may be that students seem to be consulting someone for mental health issues in higher numbers than ever before.” The report showed that the number of students who sought mental health care during the past year has doubled to 24% since 1999.

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