A recent study by the American Psychological Association indicates that 18- to 33-year-olds, the group known as millennials, may be more stressed out than their elders.
And, Dr. Kristopher Kaliebe, an LSU Health Sciences Center psychiatrist, says he's not surprised.
"As people age, they tend to feel more centered and secure and know their place in the world. Young people, while they have more options and more flexibility and freedom to move around...they're also at an unsettled time in their lives and they're trying to establish themselves."
A gloomy economy is apparently a major stress factor for young people, whose unemployment rate is 13.1%, well above the national average.
Again, Dr. Kaliebe is not surprised.
"Increasing stress is a natural reaction to people becoming more aware of the uncertainties of the economy."
And, he says, that increased awareness can be quite a wake-up call.
"The whole idea of going to college, getting out and jumping into a great job may be more of an idea than a reality. A lot of times, when people become more aware of the reality of how precarious things are and how possible it is that things can go bad, they become more stressed."
"They either have a huge student debt or they see people not having jobs or struggling, and stress is going to follow from that," says Kaliebe. "Especially if they don't have a clear path in front of them or a lot of support underneath them."
According to the study, nearly 40% of millennials said their stress shot up in the last year, compared with 33% of baby boomers and 29% of those 67 and older.
In fact, with decades ahead of them in the job market, more than half of the millennials said they stay awake at night worrying.
"People who are finding themselves in a precarious economic situation are having problems sleeping, because that's a sign of stress," says Kaliebe. "And, these kids, especially if they have a lot of debt and don't have the kind jobs they want are probably feeling that."
A recent survey of 2010 college graduates found nearly half were in jobs that didn't require a university diploma.
Possibly because of their relative inexperience with the real world, the study also found young people were more likely to react to stress with anger or annoyance.
Kaliebe thinks that's because a lot of them have been told that, if they just follow a certain path, everything would work out for them. And now they're finding that's not necessarily the case.
"There might be some good in that, though," Kaliebe says. "In that this is the reflection of the reality that this generation is not going to have, maybe, as easy economic opportunities as their parents did. And that's okay. That's just the new world. They have a lot of things that their parents didn't have and they may just have to figure out their way."
"I'd rather see them stressed and mindful than complacent and not taking it seriously."