It was when I was about to scold on one of my student who just got fractured elbow by tripping over something that I realized, “ It’s our fault”. It was the second injury in a row. Pain and emptiness in his eyes made me question myself, “Are we elders responsible for this frailness?”
Now don’t take me wrong. I may not be a funny God-sent teacher to the student and most of the time I am frowning while grading my students’ essays but I am real stress buster for them. Besides teaching I am also responsible for first aid provision. Tackling all sorts of injuries from scratch till fractured limbs during school hours is real agonizing.
What I observe is Pakistan young generation or famously called “Pepsi generation and millennial generation”is degenerating.
Different sort of injuries which I tackle during school hour compelled me to say so. The list include fractured bones, depression, headaches, stomach issues, body cramps, hypertension, obesity, lack of attention, behavioral issues, lack of tolerance, anger and destructive nature.Reason for listing all this is not to increase medical vocabulary but to highlight that “I’m dealing with age group 11-16years.
Following are the reasons for all this:
Dry and weak bone structure:
Price campaigns plus favorite singers, models and fashion icons in all famous Pepsi commercials compel our youth to be pepsi phile. Their love for sugar and phosphorus loaded fizzy drinks cause loss of calcium and mineral content from teenage bones which are already not getting enough calcium deposits.
We hear about teenagers committing suicide. There are different factors behind this but the biggest is unidentified stress. In Pakistan alone, this disastrous trend is increasing and sadly official data either missing or incomplete. Teens face emotional problems because we elders are often too busy to tackle or listen to them. List of stress include academic stress, physical stress, social stress, financial stress, stress due to family problems, poor self-esteem, drastic changes, unhealthy competition, peer pressure, sibling rivalry and the list goes on and on.
Yes you heard right. Past scenario was busy dad but sweet mom was always at home for her children. I remember my mom’s appetizing cooking and her presence to lift me when I fall. She was always there to hold me. Why moms these days are too busy to provide fresh meals or hold the falling child or wipe away the tears. Moms are culturally and socially paid for being busy. Social media, career, friends circle, shopping phobia and many other reasons are the contributors.
One of my students has so many health problems that it is hard to keep track. He suffers from dehydration, fatigue, headaches, stomach ache and backache. I feel real devastated looking at him as if he is trapped inside bubble of emotions. This dilemma is common among youth. The imbalance life structure, increasing education, social or sports demand, low EQ, rapid development in the body and lack of sleep are the root cause. Our youth suffer from chronic fatigue syndrome and emotional stress is one reason among few.
Bizarre food disorders and healthy food phobia:
Skipping breakfast, gobbling down sugar and carbs, feeding on soda, chips, candy and donuts all day and then gorging later is common scenario in a millennial teen’s life. These bad eating habits cause obesity, fatigue, nutrient deficiency related diseases and poor performance in social life.Junk food campaigns targeting teens, technology, stress, anxiety or depression cause this unhealthy life style. Now, to get back in shape, teens get into crash dieting mode, lose weight by unhealthy means which add fuel to fire causing further deterioration.
Our young generation has more responsibility than us. Just ask yourself how to make sure the next generation is more fortunate, happier and stronger than we are?
Think about it.
This is a Guest article by Hoor Khan. You can reach her directly at Linkedin