The modern social and academic demands of the world can be difficult for young adults. For those with a mental illness, it can be even more challenging.

Young adults typically experience a period of change and transition between the ages of 18 and 26. Leaving high school, beginning college, or entering the workforce can be challenging and emotional life chapters. In fact, the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) says that 80 percent of students have felt overwhelmed by their new responsibilities.

In addition, one in four college students has a diagnosable mental illness. The most common mental health issues include depression, anxiety, eating disorders, substance abuse, and suicidal thoughts.

Facing this transitional period can be difficult enough. Combining this with a mental illness can even lead to:

  • Trouble focusing
  • Poor academic performance in school
  • Social detachment
  • Sleep problems
  • Decreased functioning

For some, mental illness and these difficulties can even take their life. In fact, suicide is the second leading cause of death in youth between the ages of 15 and 24.

Unfortunately, a mental health stigma remains, which can prevent people from seeking needed psychiatric treatment. This stigma is one of the reasons why 40 percent of those suffering with a mental illness avoid professional help. Fortunately, many students, clinicians, and organizations are trying to raise mental health awareness and bring an end to the stigma.

Lifespan’s Young Adult Outpatient Psychiatry was specifically established to address the unique challenges faced by today’s young adults. Our center is composed of psychiatrists and therapists who are trained to help this group overcome the mental health hurdles of adulthood.

Our comprehensive program helps 18- to 26-year-olds lead more productive lives, even with a psychiatric illness. We’re dedicated to developing innovative mental health service models, outreach, and advocacy to benefit young adults and their families.

For more information on our program, visit our website, or call us at 401-793-8808. 

Young Adult Outpatient Psychiatry »

Meesha Ahuja, MD

Dr. Meesha Ahuja is a psychiatrist and the clinical director of the Young Adult Outpatient Psychiatry at Lifespan.