The numbers are surprising, and concerning. One in five Teens will experience Depression. Suicide is now the Third leading cause of death people ages 15-24. Research shows that if Depression is left untreated, there is a strong liklihood that it will occur again, usually within five to seven years.
Teen Depression is not “normal”, or a rite of passage, and it’s so much more than just mood swings. Depression is a medical condition that often presents in a variety of ways, especially in young people.
Symptoms of Depression include:
•Feelings of Sadness, which can include bouts of crying
•Sleep disturbances: Sleeping too much or too little
•Irritability, frustration, Anger
•Feelings of wworthlessness, guilt, self-criticism
•Loss of interest in friends, and once pleasurable activities
•Sudden weight loss, or weight gain
•Non-specific physical complaints (headaches, stomach or body aches)
•Neglected physical appearance
•Self-Harm, such as cutting or burning
•Thoughts of death or suicide
While there is no such thing as a “typical” depressed Teen, in my practice I often see adolescents who are feeling sad, and are acting out their feelings through irritability with parents, withdrawing from friends, and showing a lack of focus in school.
If these symptoms sound familiar, finding help for your Teen should be your next step. Contact your a mental health professional who specializes in working with Adolescent Depression. I offer a free, brief phone assessment to determine if we are a good fit to work together.