The current mental health crisis is affecting athletes in significant and concerning ways. Several contemporary or newly-appreciated factors may be interacting to contribute to this crisis and to its impact in sport. Those factors include: emerging adulthood as a particularly challenging phase of life; discrimination and racism; increasing professionalization of sports at younger ages; lack of mental health literacy and resources; the impact of technology and the 24/7 world; and the COVID-19 pandemic. Fortunately, at the same time, mental health stigma is showing signs of lessening. To further decrease stigma and enhance help-seeking, all stakeholders should appreciate mental health as inseparable from other aspects of physical health in athletes. Simultaneous with working to decrease risk factors in sport, we should work to optimize protective factors. Specifically, we should work toward a culture of mental health literacy, cultural competency, and positive supports in the sporting environment.

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