Sweden restricts trans treatments for minors

The first country to recognize legal gender reassignment recorded a 1,500% increase in cases of geneder dysphoria in females aged 13 to 17.

Sweden has restricted trans treatments for minors. The first country to legally recognize gender reassignment is now facing a sharp increase in the number of diagnoses of gender dysphoria and therefore decided to apply these restrictions, AFP reported.

In February 2022, the National Board of Health and Welfare (Socialstyrelsen), announced that it was stopping hormone therapy for minors, except in very specific cases. Eight months later, in December, experts stopped transgender treatments altogether and limited mastectomies for teens who want to change their sex for medical research purposes: "The uncertain state of knowledge calls for caution," said the head of the board's department, Thomas Linden.

The figures are of concern to health authorities in Sweden. As detailed by DW between 1998 and 2021, almost 9,000 people were diagnosed with gender dysphoria, a disorder that occurs when a person does not identify with the physical sex he or she was born with.

In 2021 alone, more than 800 people from the country claimed to suffer from this gender dysphoria. The trend especially affects women between 13 and 17 years of age. In fact, according to AFP, the percentage of women in this category increased by 1,500% compared to 2008.

Experts in Sweden do not know why the number of cases is on the rise

Psychiatrist Mikael Landen is one of the experts who worked on the report used by health authorities to restrict trans treatments. He told AFP that the reasons behind the increase in the number of cases are a "mystery": "It used to be a male phenomenon and now there is a strong female over-representation."

However, Landen clarified that he does not believe that the excessive increase in cases is due to a change in social mentality: "Tolerance has been high in Sweden for at least the last 25 years, so you can't say it has changed."