June 18, 2024

Is My Teen Depressed? 

Teen Depressed – Parents want the best for their children at all times but as children turn to teenagers, guardians may experience a drift which is sometimes common. However, it becomes worrying when parents can no longer understand why there is a change in behavior and the teenagers are not willing to have a conversation. Depression is a major cause of this drift between parents and teenagers and can be described as persistent feelings of sadness and even loss of interest in activities that were once exciting. 

There are several ways to know if your teen is depressed and these are:

Observing emotional changes

Everyone experiences bouts of sadness and happiness, therefore change in moods is okay. However, if as a parent you note that your child is always looking sad and sometimes crying, is having fits of anger and seems angry with everyone and everything, conflict with friends and family, irritable and  even talks about suicide, it is time to seek medical help. 

Observe behavior changes.

Every teenager has friends they like to hang out with and activities they love to undertake. A depressed teenager may avoid all these and lock themselves away since depression loves solitude. Other behavioral changes you may notice from teenagers suffering from depression include:

-Skipping school.

-Poor performance in school especially for top achievers.

-Drug abuse; teen may indulge in alcohol or smoking. 

There are other behavioral changes that affect the overall wellbeing of teenagers health wise that parents should watch out for. These are:

-Loss or increased appetite. When this occurs, teens may lose weight or gain weight rapidly and suffer from illness such as obesity especially because of less activities. 

-Lack of sleep or too much sleep. Some teens suffer from Insomnia or may sleep too much than usual when suffering from depression. 

– Headaches. Teens may also report Migraines and tension headaches.  

Lastly, suicidal jokes, suicide attempts and self harm are key indicators of depression from underlying issues affecting teenagers. The best thing a parent can do is seek help as soon as possible since these actions are just but a cry for help. 

In conclusion, depression affects the mental, emotional and physical well being of teens. Parents can try talk to their teens once they notice the symptoms to find out the magnitude of the problem. If not, they can always talk to mental health professionals at Claritychi.com and doctors for further analysis of the situation who can in turn make recommendations for a journey towards recovery.

What can I do to help?

Promote good health

The necessities for good mental health include a healthy diet, getting enough sleep, exercise, and positive relationships with others at home and school.

Limit screen time (TV, computer) and encourage physical activity to help build positive relationships with others.

Spending time alone with each parent, being acclaimed for good behavior, and being stressed about their strengths helps bond between parent and child.

Provide Security and Protection

Talk to your child about bullying or bullying. Being the victim of bullying or harassment is one cause of mental health problems in children.

Be on the lookout for grief, bereavement, or loss issues. Seek help if you are dealing with grief problems that are not getting better. If you, as a parent, are grieving a loss, ask for help and find additional support for your child.

Reduce stress. It may be necessary to make short-term changes in the amount of homework, assignments, or activities.

Lock up firearms, knives, ties, cords, medicines (including those you buy without a prescription), and alcoholic beverages.

Educate Others

Your teen is not making up the symptoms.

What appears to be laziness or irritability may be a symptom of depression.

Discuss any family medical history of depression to increase understanding

Help your teen develop understanding and adaptation skills.

Help your youngster relax with physical and creative doings. Focus on the positive things about the child.

Talk to and listen to the child with love and understanding. Please help your child learn to describe her feelings.

Help your child look at problems in a different, more positive way.

Solve problems or tasks in small steps so your child can succeed.

Create a Safety Plan

Follow your child’s treatment plan. Make sure your child joins therapy and takes his medicine as directed.

The treatment works, but it can take a few weeks. The depressed child may not notice mood swings right away.

Make a list of people you can call when negative feelings get worse.

Find the phone numbers of your local pediatrician, therapist, and mental health crisis response team.

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