More Anxiety Thoughts

A little while back I wrote a blog entry about a young woman going to the ER for a panic attack. I ended with these thoughts:

Here are my questions:

– Why are young people going to the ER for panic attacks?

– Why are so many young people having panic attacks and anxiety?

I don’t know the answer to the first question. I think I know a partial answer to the second… I recommend the book Digital Minimalism for anyone who agrees with me and has this same problem. And I think chronic weed may be an issue as well.

Since then I found this article, which is about a year old. It’s called More kids are showing up in ERs with mental health crises. Here is what was found:

In 2012, they found, 50.4 emergency department visits per 100,000 visits by children were for mental health-related concerns. By 2016, mental health was the cause for 78.5 emergency department visits per 100,000 children.

That’s a 50% increase. Personally, in my small practice (600 patients), I see young people all the time for anxiety and depression. It’s an epidemic. I still believe weed has something to do with it but I believe technology is even more causative. I won’t go into a debate or detail here but technology disrupts dopamine balance in the brain and that may be playing a major part. Just look at this article in Nature where they conclude that “there appears to be an imbalance in dopaminergic receptor and transporter expression related to suicide that differs from that associated with ELA or age”.

Something is going on and I am worried.

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Douglas Farrago MD

Douglas Farrago MD is a full-time practicing family doc in Forest, Va. He started Forest Direct Primary Care where he takes no insurance and bills patients a monthly fee. He is board certified in the specialty of Family Practice. He is the inventor of a product called the Knee Saver which is currently in the Baseball Hall of Fame. The Knee Saver and its knock-offs are worn by many major league baseball catchers. He is also the inventor of the CryoHelmet used by athletes for head injuries as well as migraine sufferers. Dr. Farrago is the author of four books, two of which are the top two most popular DPC books. From 2001 – 2011, Dr. Farrago was the editor and creator of the Placebo Journal which ran for 10 full years. Described as the Mad Magazine for doctors, he and the Placebo Journal were featured in the Washington Post, US News and World Report, the AP, and the NY Times. Dr. Farrago is also the editor of the blog Authentic Medicine which was born out of concern about where the direction of healthcare is heading and the belief that the wrong people are in charge. This blog has been going daily for more than 15 years Article about Dr. Farrago in Doximity Email Dr. Farrago – [email protected] 

  3 comments for “More Anxiety Thoughts

  1. Philip Clarke
    October 21, 2019 at 7:39 am

    Could it be that “young people” feel they have no future, no chance if a decent job and a generally meaningless existence?

  2. Thomas David Guastavino
    October 12, 2019 at 5:31 pm

    About 15 years ago I first saw a 22 yo female with a wrist fracture who was on full boat social security disability for “obsessive conclusive” disorder. Soon I started seeing more and more young people on full boat SSD for mental health disorders. What had changed was the these young were able to get SSD for these disorders. Perhaps the reason why we are seeing more and more of these “disorders” is that we are now paying for them ?

    • Steve O'
      October 13, 2019 at 11:36 am

      That’s seen in advances in imaging when new “whatsitomas” are found.

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