Calling young people ‘snowflakes’ could damage their mental health, new study shows
Calling young people ‘snowflakes’ could damage their mental health, new study shows Millennials – those who reached adolescence around the early 2000s – are often referred to as the snowflake generation. The term is used to described young people as over-sensitive and intolerant of disagreement. But, research by insurance firm Aviva found that 72 per cent of 16 to 24-year-olds think the term is unfairly applied, while 74 per cent say it could have a negative effect on their mental health. Figures also show more than half of 16 to 24-year-olds have experienced stress or anxiety in the last year – compared to just over a third of all UK adults. Medical expert Doug Wright said: Our findings suggest that young adults are more likely to be experiencing mental health problems, so using a phrase which criticises this age group could add to this issue. Any term used disparagingly to a segment of the population is inherently negative. “While young adults in particular appear to take offence to the ‘snowflake’ label, the majority of adults agree that the term is unfair and unhelpful, so it’s important that people consider how such labels are used, and the cumulative effect they could have on their recipients. The phrase is in common usage in America, where debates over political correctness, no-platforming guest speakers and trigger warnings have become a regular feature of mainstream debate.