Young adulthood is the stage of life ranging from the early twenties to the mid-thirties. With all of the pivotal moments that occur during young adulthood, it can feel overwhelming at times. Knowing what to expect and how to plan for this period can help you enjoy a happier, healthier life. For many, young adulthood is recognized as a time of growth and development as you transition from being a teenager to an independent adult. Regardless of your age, change is inevitable, but the rapid pace of change during young adulthood can sometimes feel shocking. Being ill-prepared or taking on too many challenges at once may lead to stress or anxiety.
Now that the youngest Millennials are adults, how do they compare with those who were their age in the generations that came before them? Millennials have brought more racial and ethnic diversity to American society. Compared with previous generations, Millennials — those ages 22 to 37 in — are delaying or foregoing marriage and have been somewhat slower in forming their own households. They are also more likely to be living at home with their parents, and for longer stretches.
For much of human history, the idea of adolescence being a distinct life stage was nonexistent. However, the years from ages 13 to 19 were not considered part of childhood until the turn of the 19th century. An abundance of research indicates that teens and young adults are experiencing increased levels of stress and depression. Survey respondents reported that during the school year, they had a stress level of 5. During the summer break, teens reported a slight decrease in stress levels — 4.
NCBI Bookshelf. This chapter provides a foundation for the remainder of the report. It summarizes current knowledge regarding young adulthood as a critical developmental period in the life course; highlights historical patterns and recent trends in the social and economic transitions of young adults in the United States; reviews data on the health status of the current cohort of young adults; briefly summarizes the literature on diversity and the effects of bias and discrimination on young adults' health and well-being; presents the committee's key findings and their implications; and enunciates several key principles to guide future action in assembling data, designing research, and formulating programs and policies pertaining to the health, safety, and well-being of young adults. Many of the topics summarized in this chapter are discussed in greater depth in subsequent chapters.