Wellbeing research from Aviva finds that young adults object to ‘Generation Snowflake’ label, saying it is unfair and offensive.
Young adults are hitting back at the ‘Generation Snowflake’ moniker, saying it is unfair and potentially damaging to their age group.
The ‘snowflake’ term is sometimes used to describe young adults, who are seen as being more prone to taking offence, more emotionally vulnerable and less resilient than previous generations.
According to a study by Aviva health insurance, nearly three quarters of people (72%) aged 16-24 said the term is unfairly applied to people in this age bracket, while a similar number (74%) feel it could have a negative effect on people’s mental health.
While these views are most marked amongst young adults, the majority of UK adults agree that the ‘Generation Snowflake’ term is unhelpful: 58% of adults feel the label is unfairly applied, while 57% feel it could negatively impact young people’s mental health.
Six out of 10 UK adults (59%) also agree that young people are facing greater challenges than previous generations, and a similar number (57%) feel that society should be more understanding and sympathetic towards young adults.
A separate study released by Aviva today suggests that young adults in this age group (aged 16-24) are the worst-affected by mental health issues. They are more likely to say they have experienced a mental health condition (63% v 47% UK adults) and are the least comfortable discussing their mental health problems (33% vs 27% all UK adults), suggesting millions of young adults could be going undiagnosed or ignored. They are also least likely to feel they are receiving the right treatment for their issues (15% vs 10% UK adults).
Nearly half (46%) of young adults say they have suffered from anxiety in the past 12 months, significantly higher than UK adults (35%). Depression is also more common amongst this younger age group (39% vs 30% UK adults).
Across the UK, stress was found to be the most common mental health condition among UK adults of all ages, with 37% having experienced stress over the past year. This rose to 45% for young adults and while 17% of UK adults said they feel stressed every day, this climbed to 28% for young adults.
|Young Adults||UK Adults (16 +)|
|Uncomfortable telling people about a mental health problem||33%||27%|
|Experiencing a mental health condition but haven’t sought help||13%||7%|
|Experiencing a mental health condition but do not believe they’re receiving the right treatment||15%||10%|
|Experienced stress in the last year||45%||37%|
|Experienced anxiety in the last year||46%||35%|
|Experienced depression in the last year||39%||30%|
Of the young adults who have experienced a mental health problem, body image appears to be one of the key contributors amongst this age group. A third (33%) of young adults cite unhappiness with their appearance as one of the main causes of their mental health problems, compared to just 18% of all UK adults. Money worries (42%) is the only issue rated more highly than body image for young adults.
Dr Doug Wright, Medical Director, Aviva UK Health comments:
“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.”
Click here to see the Wellbeing Report from Aviva.
Aviva Press Office:
Sarah Poulter | 07800 691569 | Sarah.firstname.lastname@example.org
Monique Crockett | 07800 693182 | Monique.email@example.com
Jess Geoghegan | 07800 695673 | Jess.firstname.lastname@example.org
Snowflake research is based on a survey of 2,022 nationally representative UK adults aged 16 and above carried out by Censuswide in November 2017.The mental health research is based on a survey of 4,205 nationally representative UK adults aged 16 and above carried out by Censuswide in November 2017.
Notes to editors – about Aviva:
- Aviva provides life insurance, general insurance, health insurance and asset management to 33 million customers.
- In the UK we are the leading insurer serving one in every four households and have strong businesses in selected markets in Europe, Asia and Canada. Our shares are listed on the London Stock Exchange and we are a member of the FTSE100 index.
- Aviva’s asset management business, Aviva Investors, provides asset management services to both Aviva and external clients, and currently manages over £340 billion in assets. Total group assets under management at Aviva group are £450 billion
- .Aviva helps people save for the future and manage the risks of everyday life; we paid out £34.4 billion in benefits and claims in 2016.
- By serving our customers well, we are building a business which is strong and sustainable, which our people are proud to work for, and which makes a positive contribution to society.
- The Aviva media centre at http://www.aviva.com/media/ includes company information, images, and a news release archive.
- For an introduction to what we do and how we do it, please click here http://www.aviva.com/about-us/aviva/
- For broadcast-standard video, please visit http://www.aviva.com/media/b-roll-library/
- Follow us on twitter: www.twitter.com/avivaplc/
- Follow us on LinkedIn: www.linkedin.com/company/aviva-plc
- For the latest corporate films from around our business, subscribe to our YouTube channel: www.youtube.com/user/aviva
- We have a Globelynx system for broadcast interviews. Please contact the Press Officer noted above if you would like to make a booking.