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2024-02-17 12:28:45

Severity of mental illness increasing alarmingly

Jayashree Bhaduri

Severity of mental illness increasing alarmingly

Sohag Khandker, a student of faculty of fine arts of Rajshahi University, committed suicide a few days ago, writing a suicide note saying, “I’ve been defeated to life. I can’t take it anymore.” The main reason behind his suicide was psychological problems or complexity. The mental or psychological problems due to frustration, gloominess, stress, excess use of social media, addiction to drugs are increasing at an alarming rate in the country. Even, due to envy and hatred, many people is being involved in murdering others.

According to the latest national survey, around 1 crore 77 lakh people has been suffering from psychological problems in the country. The students are most prone to these problems and so the risk of committing suicide is increasing.

It’s known from the information of Bangladesh Election Commission, in 2005, the number of adult persons in the country was 7 crore 64 lakh 26 thousands and 995. According to the info of National Mental Health Survey, 16 percent of adults in the country were suffering from mental diseases, which was equal to 1 crore 22 lakh people.

After that the last National Mental Health Survey was conducted in 2018-19. According to the data of Bangladesh Election Commission, the number of adult citizens in the country in 2018 is 10 crore 41 lakh 42 thousand 105. According to the latest survey, 17 percent of adult citizens are suffering from mental illness. According to that, about 1 crore 77 lakh 4 thousand 157 people are suffering from mental illness. 92 percent of these people do not seek medical advice or services. According to the survey, 18 percent of children and adolescents have mental health problems, but 95 percent of them do not receive any treatment.

According to the survey published by Anchal Foundation, 72.2 percent of the 1,773 students who participated in the survey said that they faced mental problems. Among them, 85.9 percent of students said that the internet played a role in their mental problems. 26.1 percent of the students consider the Internet to be completely responsible and 59.8 percent of the students consider it fairly responsible. According to survey data, 51.4 percent of students feel inferior, incompetent, failed, or unhappy on social media. Social media activity created the desire to become popular overnight within 21.7 percent of the youths. The suicide tendency of school, college, university students is creating fear among the parents.

National Institute of Mental Health and Associate Professor Dr. Helal Uddin Ahmed told The Bangladesh Pratidin, "From the analysis of the incidents from all sides and from our experience of visiting patients, the risk of mental illness has increased a lot. The element of mental imbalance is increasing in the new lifestyle. Factors like livelihood crisis, fear, panic, seeing horrible death in front of the eyes, atrocities are pushing us towards mental illness. Mental problems are increasing. People's tolerance is decreasing, domestic violence has multiplied. Drugs like LSD are being used in the country.  As people are getting addicted to drugs, suicide is increasing. Incidents like Killing children and wives are dismembering people. Such incidents used to happen in the past, but recently they have increased at an alarming rate.

(The report was published on print and online versions of The Bangladesh Pratidin on February 17 and rewritten in English by Lutful Hoque Khan) ​


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