Teenagers face a lot of pressure. From the changes that come from puberty to peer pressure, to questions about who they are. With all of these uncertainties, it is not always easy to differentiate between normal growing pains and depression.
However, depression is more than just moodiness. It is a serious health problem that can impact every aspect of a teenager’s life. Fortunately, it is treatable and parents can help. The right mental health therapy, combined with your love and support, can go a long way toward helping your teen overcome depression.
Teen Depression: Recognizing the Signs
While acting out and occasional bad moods are normal during the teenage years, depression is something entirely different. Some of the signs of teenage depression include:
- Irritability and Moodiness
- Anger and Hostility
- Lack of Energy
- Restlessness and Agitation
- Concentration Problems
- Lack of Motivation
- Poor School Performance
- Changes in Sleeping and Eating Habits
- Unexplained Aches and Pains
- Loss of Interest in Previously Enjoyed Activities/Hobbies
- Thoughts of Suicide or Death
Still unsure whether a teen is depressed or just experiencing normal growing pains? Consider how severe the symptoms are, how long they have been going on, and how different they are from their normal selves.
Suicide Warning Signs
No parent wants to think about it. However, seriously depressed teenagers often think about, speak of, or make attempts at suicide. It is vital that you take any suicidal behaviors or thoughts seriously. They are a cry for help from your teen. Some of the warning signs of suicide include:
- Unexplained Cuts, Bruises, and Other Injuries
- Joking or Talking About Committing Suicide
- Romanticizing Dying
- Writing Poems and Stories About Suicide, Death, or Dying
- Giving Away Prized Possessions
- Saying Goodbye to Family and Friends as if for the Last Time
Here to Help
WCAP Counseling, a respected provider of counseling services in Reynoldsburg, Ohio, is here to help. If you suspect that your child is depressed or when you notice any of the warning signs listed above, contact us.
For emergency situations, call 911 or proceed to the closest emergency room immediately.