Stress Among Young Adults In Australia: Literature Review Assessment Answer

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Question :

             Stress among Young adults in Australia

Project outline: 

According to a study in stress and wellbeing run by the Australian Psychological Society (APS) in 2014, almost two people in five Australians reported experiencing at least some symptoms of depression ith 13% of these Australians reporting symptoms in the severe to extremely severe range. On top of this, more than ¼ th of Australians reported experiencing at least some anxiety symptoms, with 13% of these Australians reporting severe to extremely severe levels of anxiety.

Financial concerns seem to have been the largest contributor to stress within Australia over the past few years with 45% of participants saying that this was their primary concern. Of this group, a huge 58% felt that pressure to afford basic food and necessities was causing them undue stress and concern.

Research question:

 Young adults subjected to stress and depression when compared to other age groups?


 Stress is one of the key issue in Australia among young adults. 

What’s new:  

 Focus is to reduce the level of stress in young adults.


It is a problem of today’s generation is none want to lose and that is the main cause of depression. One failure causes depression mean while youths get demotivated and failed to try again. As it leads to suicidal tendency in youth it is becoming alarming problem now.

Educational institutions has to provide activities which can reduce stress levels in young adults.

They can arrange motivational classes that can relax young minds.

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Answer :

Literature Review: Stress among Young adults in Australia


The assessment discusses the issue of stress among young adults in Australia. According to the research of the Australian psychological society, high numbers of young adults in Australia are stressed and anxious. Many numbers of young adults have thoughts of harming themselves or possess suicide probability (Australian Psychological Society, 2019). This assessment identifies critical issues with respect to stress among young adults in Australia. Stress is the part of human life, but the high stress on the Adults mind affects the everyday life of young adults. Stress causes mental health issues among young adults in Australia (Healthdirect, 2019). This assessment identifies the issues behind the stress such as family confliction, physical health like concern about body image, study, and school problems. These identified issues are the main reason to cause stress among young adults in Australia. The stress is more common health issue among the young females of Australia rather than young males in Australia. According to the survey of the annual mission Australia, 20% of the young adults aged between 11 to 14 years have reported that stress is the major health issue in their daily life (Probonoaustralia, 2019). The small amount of stress is good for health. It increases the motivation and energy of the human body. But the too much stress issue among the young adults can make them feel overwhelmed.  

This assessment provides information about the issues of stress among young adults in Australia. The report also provides the concept of symptoms related to the stress issue that hampers the everyday life of the young generation such as nervous habits, poor sleep, headaches, sleeping too much, being moody, lack of concentration, etc. (Blackdoginstitute, 2019). The assessment reviews the literature of different Authors to justify the research question related to the stress issue among young adults. The report describes the initiative of the Australian Government to reduce the stress issue among the Australian. Finally, the research report provides some recommendation to improve the mental health condition of Young adults in Australia by reducing the stress factor.  

Key issues identified with respect to Stress among young adults in Australia

According to the research of the Department of Health in Australia, mental illness is widespread among the young generation of Australia. The mental illness causes the stress disorder issue among the young generation. According to the research of the Health Department, common causes of the stress are illness, family confliction, relationship problems, life pressure from school, study and workplace, emotional abusement, physical abusement, financial problem issues, losing a job, the unfortunate death (Teachermagazine, 2019). The common symptoms of the stress are muscle tension, nervous habits, lack of motivation, poor sleep, being moody, sleeping too much, anxious or feeling overwhelmed, habits of alcohol and drugs, etc. 

According to the youth mental health report, in 2016, 1 in 4 young people aged from 15 to 19 years, reported the serious mental illness. According to the research of the Australian psychological society, young adults aged between 18 to 25 years have reported the lower level of well being due to the depression and stress than the older Australian people (Blackdoginstitute, 2019). 35% of the young adults in Australia having the complexity of distress in their everyday life, 26% of the Young adults in Australia having anxiety symptoms due to heavy stress, 26% of the Young adults having severe levels of depression (Blackdoginstitute, 2019). According to the research of the Australian psychological society, 61% of young generation drink alcohol, 40% of Young Adults addicted to smoke, 41% of young adults addicted to gambling, 31% of young adults take drugs to manage the stress. 26% of the young generation of Australia reported having severe symptoms of depression due to too much stress (American Psychological Society, 2015). According to the research of the Australian psychological society, the addition of social media impacts on the everyday life of the young generation and increases the stress factor among them. According to the research of the Australian Health Department, Stress increases the mortality rate among the young generation, 3128 young people died due to the heavy stress (Health, 2019a). The Australian health department sector has been taken many initiatives to reduce the stress level among young adults such as school-based stress management programs like yoga programs, Primary mental health care services, suicide prevention campaigns, support for day to day living in the community programs, etc. to reduce the stress factor among the young generation. 

Justification of research question

The research question for this Literature Review has clearly clarified the reason behind the stress among young adults rather than older Australian. The main research question of this research report is :

  • Are Young adults subjected to stress and depression more when compared to other age groups?

This research question is sub-divided into the more objective question:

  1. What are the reasons behind the stress among young adults in Australia?
  2. What are the key outcomes of stress and depression among young adults in Australia?  
  3. How are other social factors and age-related to the occurrence of stress and depression among young Adults? 

These above-declared question can further be justified after identifying the link between the social factors, age and the onset of the stress and depression among the young adults in Australia. The number of social factors including family confliction, relationship problems, life pressure from school, study and workplace, emotional abusement, physical abusement, financial problem issues, discrimination that develops the stress and depression factor among the young adults rather than the other age group people in Australia. Specifically, young adults aged 15 to 19 reported having serious mental health issues such as coping with stress, depression, personal safety issues, etc. (Pascoe, 2019). 

Significance of research on Stress among young adults in Australia

The significance of this research is relying on the identification of the key issues related to the stress among young adults. The research identifies that 74.9% of young adults aged 15 to 19 reported having severed level of stress due to many social factors such as family confliction, relationship problems, workplace, study, and school pressures, financial issues, discrimination issues, etc. (Blackdoginstitute, 2019). According to the youth mental health report, 58.4% of young adults suffering from depression due to heavy stress. According to the youth mental health report, In 2016, 32.3% of young adults attempt suicide, 41.6% of young adults concerned about family conflict, 34.3% of young adults stressed due to emotional abuse, 13.2% of young adults addicted to the drugs, 0.9% of young adults addicted to alcohol (Blackdoginstitute, 2019). The research identifies the key outcomes of stress and depression among young adults such as headaches, lack of motivation, lack of energy, nervous habits, poor sleep, being moody, lack of concentration, sleeping too much, etc.

 The severe level of stress can create an impact on the everyday life of the young generation. Heavy stress has negative impacts on the academic performance of young adults. The research reviews the online literature of different authors to justify the above-declared research questions. According to the research of the Australian psychological society, 26% of 18 to 25 years young adults find environmental issues that are the main source of the stress among them such as personal health issues, personal financial issues, issues regarding maintaining the healthy lifestyle, issues regarding the social media, etc (American Psychological Society, 2015). 

According to the report of the Australian Health Department, The Australian Government has been taken many initiatives to reduce the stress factor among the young generation by implementing the mental health programs for giving support them to cope up with the stress and depression, suicide prevention program to reduce the mortality rate among the young generation of Australia (Health, 2019a). Stress increases the mortality rate among the young generation; around 3128, young people died due to depression and heavy stress (Pascoe, 2019). This research provides significant evidence based on the effect of stress and depression among the young generation by reviewing different online literature. The research is significant because of this assessment provides the evidence to manage the stress level among the young generation.

Literature Review

Causes of Stress Disorders Among Young People in Australia

The first article chosen on the topic of interest is named the Journal of Affective Disorders that correlate the prevalence of anxiety, stress and depression in a chosen sample of college students. Although not directly relevant to the topic of interest, this peer-reviewed article focuses on the stress of college students who can be considered as young adults. The article was published on October 2014, thus making it current and updated with recent data and information. The authors Beiter et al. (2015) have derived primary information from a chosen sample of a college student who has been suffering from stress, anxiety and depression and linked it to past theories and case studies. Multiple citations for each theory make the article credible. The bibliography for the citations has been provided at the end of the article, and the point of view is entirely unbiased as the student feedback data were kept unaltered.

The next article covers the topic of suicide risk, stress sensitivity and self-esteem among young adults. Although not specific to Australian young adults, this peer-reviewed article, published in 2015, provides an in general view on how stress can impact young adults and result in affected people reporting auditory hallucinations and committing suicides. The authors DeVylder&Hilimire, (2015), have chosen a non-clinical young adult sample for the research and used Psychological Stress Index and Rosenberg Self-Esteem Scale to determine their condition severity. Bibliography of credible sources has been provided in the article, and it does not seem biased as original psychological case studies and theories have been used.

The third article determines the relationship of smartphone addiction, academic performance, satisfaction with life and stress. Published on September 2015, this article is peer-reviewed and is relevant to our topic as young adults in Australia has been suffering stress mostly due to their financial concerns which are linked to academic performances and satisfaction with life. The authors Samaha &Hawi, (2016), have mostly linked stress with smartphone addictions and provided relevant case studies and theories with credible citations to make the article reliable. The bibliography for the citations has been provided in the article, although the evidence provided is biased to some extent as it only considers the adverse effects of using smartphones.

This article is relevant to the chosen topic as it highlights the stress among young Australians due to transitions in emerging adulthood, although it is only specific to women. Moreover, it does not contain any updated information as it was published in 2008 and does not contain any citation or bibliography. The authors Bell & Lee(2008), have tried to connect stress levels with employment, relationships, motherhood and family origin. The results actually showed a reduced level of stress for Australian women who chose motherhood over career, and this provides a contrasting view of the chosen topic.

The article published in November 2011 is not directly relevant to the chosen topic as it states school and study as the major cause of stress for Australian youths. Although not peer-reviewed, (Probonoaustralia, 2019) provides an in-depth view of stress levels among Australians aged 11-24, which is essential to understand the rising levels of stress among them. The author has used primary data from the National Survey of Young Australians to support her claim, and the data shows how respondents have been suffering from severe stress due to excessive expectation in terms of academic performances. As most of the collected data has been kept unaltered, the article is unbiased and makes it credible for our research topic. 

Australia has always been targeting the upliftment of the mental health of the youth of the nation as the suicide rates of Australian youths is one of the highest in the world. This peer-reviewed article state that despite the psychological distress among adolescent and young adults in Australia, very little information is available on the mental health of Australian youth. The data provided by Rickwood and d'Espaignet (2016), has been derived from the Australian Youth Survey that was conducted by the Department of Education, Employment and Training. Through a questionnaire about general healthcare from 8350, participants aged between 16-24 revealed to be mentally distressed. Almost 41% of adolescent girls were considered as mild or moderate cases, whereas 26% of the boys were suffering from the same issues (Rickwood & d'Espaignet, 2016). This article does not focus on any particular cause or effect of stress on young adults, but in general, identifies the overall number of young boys and girls suffering from psychological distress in Australia.

The next article is based on the national Stress and Wellbeing in Australia survey conducted by the Australian Psychological Society (APS). This article is very closely associated with our topic of interest and along with the survey data also examines the impact of social media on the Australian youth. It also points out how wellbeing and behaviour of the Australian young adults are affected by the Fear of Missing Out (FOMO) syndrome. Published in 2015 by the APS, McGillivray and Pidgeon (2015) contains contemporary data on how Australian youth are suffering from mental stress and trauma due to excessive use of social media. Reviewed by peers, the findings of the article suggested that people aged between 18-25 had a lower level of wellbeing than older people and the unemployed youth had the highest level of stress while the retirees confirmed the highest rate. Surprisingly, people living with partners had the highest level of well being compared to all other groups in context to the living arrangements in Australia. Of them, couples without children had better mental health and the wellbeing increases with a higher level of education and income. According to the survey results, the top 5 causes of stress are personal finances, family issues, personal health, maintenance of a healthy lifestyle and issues of health of others close to them. In order to relieve stress, the most popular ways among Australian youth are watching movies or tv, focusing on the positive side, spending time with friends and family, listening to music and reading (McGillivray & Pidgeon, 2015). The survey also revealed that 12% of the participants considered keeping up with social media networks as the main source of their stress, while 51% used social media to relieve and manage their stress levels. The article consists of a very short list of bibliography and thus makes the information validated for our current research study. Completely based on primary data analysis, the article does not look biased in , and a genuine attempt has been made to reveal the condition of mental and psychological health of the adolescent and young adults of Australia. 

Impact of Stress Disorders on Australian Young Adults

For understanding the impact of stress on secondary schools and higher education in Australia is required to be able to deal with psychological conditions from the beginning of its onset during the teenage years. The article focuses on the wide range of stressors that are related to the academic demands of the Australian youth. Other previous studies on this topic have revealed that academic-related stress has a negative impact on student performance in most cases. Academic achievement, motivation and school dropout increase significantly due to the stress related to academic performances. In many cases, the impacts are long-lasting, and the students are less likely to maintain sustainable employment during their professional career and can result in the expense of billions of dollars of the Australian government (Sigfusdottir et al. 2016). Some of the severe impacts of such academic stress include reduced learning capacity of the student, various mental health problems and even occurrence of sleep disturbances, depression, anxiety and substance abuse. Published in 2019, the article has the most updated report of youth mental health of Australia and bibliography and peer review make this article a credible source of information for conducting this research study (Sigfusdottir et al. 2016). As students might sometimes hold mental stress accountable for their poor academic performance while in some cases it might be slacking and procrastination, the results might be biased in some sense and only focuses on blaming the levels of stress associated with academic performances.

This article showcases how adolescent substance use, self-harm and delinquency are a large-scale problem in most developed nations. Although not directly linked with Australian youth, as a study on the youth of the developed nation, the study can provide great insight into how economically advanced societies face and deal with adolescent stress disorders. The article provides three distinct disciplines upon which adolescent stress and strain are determined (Pascoe, Hetrick & Parker, 2019). The first discipline is mental health, where emotional health is affected by the negative impact of stress. The second discipline is criminology focusing on the effects of stress on delinquency and finally, biology, which reveals the physiological impact of stress. Converging all the disciplines, the researchers of this article has tried to analyse the biopsychosocial nature of risk and protection of individual behaviours of adolescent people and youth. It also highlights multiple social, biological and environmental factors can lead to harmful behaviour during the adolescent ages. With the help of a framework, the effects of stress, including suicidal behaviour, substance abuse and delinquency, has been established in the article (Pascoe, Hetrick & Parker, 2019). Provided with an adequate number of bibliography and peer reviews, the article provides a technical framework for determining stress impacts among adolescent people and is thus kept as much as unbiased as possible.

Intervention and Prevention Programs to Handle Stress in Australian Youths

This article is especially useful in handling the mental health and stress crisis among the young adults of Australia by providing 3 distinct recommendations based on the report of Mission Australia and Black Dog Institute. These recommendations include evidence-based universal mental health prevention and intervention programs for adolescent and young adults, which should be provided by the schools and colleges (Foxall, 2019). Additionally, as young people are very reluctant to speak freely about their anxiety and depression, providing an alternative way to direct face to face conversation is ideal for them and investing in such services would help to meet the mental need of the suffering young people of Australia. Finally, the friends and family of the suffering youth should be trained to provide support and should be available when they ask for mental support. Foxall(2019) is very relevant to the topic of interest as it provides the best recommendation and interventions programs to help Australian young adults out of their mental stress and anxiety. Published in 2017 by Criterion Conferences, the article contains updated information about the research topic. However, it does not contain any peer review or bibliography, which does not make it a very credible source. To determine if the article is biased or not, detailed knowledge on the subject is required. However, the article being very brief, it is tough to judge its biases.

The mental health carers NSW is based on the Mission Australia Youth Report Survey conducted in 2018 and provides several key policy recommendations to deal with stress disorders of Australian youth. Along with this, it also gives a brief idea about the barriers to achieving post-school goals (Mentalhealthcarersnsw, 2018). The policy recommendations also include mitigation processes for meeting the needs of aboriginal youth of Australia along with the youth population in general. Although the article is current as published in 2018 but is not peer-reviewed and does not contain any form of bibliography. From a researcher’s point of view, no form of biasedness was observed in the article and holds the recommendation for general youth and aboriginal youth in the same light.

The article focuses on the early engagement of young people with mental health services and is published in 2014, thus making it relatively current. It is evident from past studies that the prevalence of stress is higher in children and young adults, and it is necessary that they seek help, and adequate treatment is provided to them as early as possible. Untreated or poorly treated mental disorders can have a long-lasting effect on young people well into their adulthood and might also cause disruption in their professional career as well. The article Burns &Birrell(2014) provides multiple intervention and prevention programs as Australia is trying to enhance the wellbeing of its young people. The article makes a special recommendation to promote the importance of the mental health of young people and make the local population aware of the consequences. Promoting the importance is in itself an intervention program as being aware of the stress conditions would provide help and support for the young adults who are not willing to seek help on their own. Another essential step to cater the mental health of Australian youth is developing an online environment as it allows provision for the youth with a new setting and framework where they can seek out help on their own without being shamed for their mental conditions. The article also highlights the value of youth participation in the mental health landscape and provides an optimistic future to deal with stress and anxiety disorders in Australian young adults (Burns &Birrell, 2014). A long list of bibliography provided with the article makes it a credible and reliable source of information and thus has helped greatly our research study. From the perspective of a researcher, the article is completely unbiased and provides intervention and prevention programs backed by evidence and facts.

Gaps in literature

Despite complete information produced for the literature review on the chosen topic, there are some areas where it falls short and is unable to provide adequate information on specific areas. When discussing the causes of stress among young adults in Australia, the literature review provides significant evidence and information on the primary causes that develop stress. However, they fail to address the reasons behind the persuasion of social structure and framework that has caused the reasons for stress disorders in the first place. The stress levels are going significantly high on young people than older people, and the literature review fails to justify the reasons with any form of proper evidence (McGillivray & Pidgeon, 2015). In case of the impact of stress on young Australians, the literature review includes the major short-term and long-term effects of stress and anxiety disorder. However, the reason for the increased level of stress and its prevalence throughout the adolescent period is not justified properly. It requires more in-depth knowledge and research to determine why young people diagnosed with stress disorders tend to continue in such a phase for an extended period of time (Sigfusdottir et al. 2016). Finally, in the mitigation and intervention programs for dealing with stress, the major ways to deal with stress in Australian youth has been clearly stated. However, it lacks any information on how to bring up children from the very childhood to completely avoid stress and other mental conditions. As prevention is better than cure, it would be wise to follow parenting patterns so that the Australian youth are not subject to such mental conditions (Burns &Birrell, 2014). These are major areas where the literature review of the research study falls short and more research should be conducted in these areas to address the issues appropriately.

Conclusion and recommendations

The overall research topic has been well justified with the help of multiple literature reviews from several credible journal article sources and published by esteemed authors and publication houses. The issues identified with stress disorders among young adults in Australia has provided the present condition, which is alarming and must be dealt with immediately. The literature review has provided with all necessary source of secondary data required to justify the research topic. However, it is necessary that the Australian government, society, schools and colleges and family members of the distressed youths should be careful enough to address the issues as soon as possible and following the provided recommendation would help to reduce the number of young people suffering from anxiety and stress disorder in the coming years.