- Approximately one in four Yr 4 - Yr 9 Australian students reported getting bullied every few weeks.
- Frequent school bullying was highest among Year 5 (32%) and Year 8 (29%) students.
- Approximately one in five young people under 18 (20%) reported experiencing online bullying in any one year.
What is bullying?
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, bullying can be described as ‘unwanted, aggressive behaviour among school-aged children that involves a real or perceived power imbalance. The behaviour is repeated or has the potential to be repeated over time’.
Impact of Bullying
Bullying in any form can have negative impacts on all people involved. Contrary to what some people believe, bullying is not a harmless part of growing up. Initially, bullying can reduce a childs learning, participation and enjoyment of school. Long term, this can effect a childs education, mental health and social skills.
Anxiety and Depression
In the long term, victims of bullying may suffer from anxiety and depression. Children that have been bullied may also have a higher risk of other mental health problems such as low self esteem and poor academic performance. Depression and anxiety can often extend well into their adult lives and may become chronic or lifelong problems.
Depression and Anxiety are both mental health illnesses that can be treated. There is specific psychological treatment such as cognitive behavioural therapy that can help patients to reduce their symptoms of anxiety and depression. Sometimes, with long term depression or anxiety, people may benefit from treatment with medication. Early information and intervention is the key to successful treatment of these mental health conditions. Identifying sign and symptoms of anxiety and depression is an important first step. Then next step is seeking help. You can talk to your GP or make contact with an experienced psychologist. If you or someone that you know may be getting bullied or suffering from depression or anxiety, remember that there is help out there. Contact us at Swan Valley Psychology to find out more ph 08 9379 3580 or email Christina@svpc.com.au