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Teenage Depression - How Should It Be Dealt With?

Written and reviewed by
Dr. Manish S. Kansal 86% (59 ratings)
MBBS, DPM - Psychiatry
Psychiatrist, Delhi  •  24 years experience
Teenage Depression - How Should It Be Dealt With?

Teenage is a critical period in a person's life when the body goes through a sea of changes, both physically as well as mentally. For most teenagers, it is a period to explore new terrains. But the teenage period can also be associated with what people dread the most. Teenage depression, stress, and anxiety are on a mercurial rise. The World Health Organization shares a disturbing statistics whereby 1 in every 4 Indian teenagers (between 13-15 years of age) suffers from depression and the associated complications. Heart-wrenching is the fact that in many cases, the depression ends in suicides. Efforts should be made to nip the problem at the earliest.

What causes depression among teenagers?
The teenage depression can stem from the factors below mentioned:

  • As you step into adolescence, your body goes through hormonal changes. The mood swings, stress, and depression can be an outcome of the hormonal changes.
  • Teenagers subjected to bullying and harassment (schools, society, friends) can also suffer from depression.
  • A failed relationship can also act as a trigger driving the person into depression.
  • Increased and repeated pressure to excel both academically as well as in extra curricular activities can also take a toll, resulting in depression.
  • Depression can be a hereditary trait. Thus, teenagers who have a family history of depression (immediate relatives) are more susceptible to suffer from the condition.
  • At times, teenagers under peer pressure can go astray, taking to smoking, drinking or substance abuse. All these unhealthy lifestyle habits can play a pivotal role triggering depression among teenagers.

Signs and symptoms indicating depression among teenagers
Teenagers suffering from depression may exhibit one or more of the following visible signs and symptoms.

  • A sudden change in behavior. The teenager may get agitated and short tempered at small instances.
  • Their self-confidence goes for a toss.
  • Many teenagers with depression cut themselves off from the outside world. They start avoiding interacting with people as much as they can.
  • They get overcome with extreme emotions (cries even at small instances).
  • There may be changes in eating as well as sleeping habits.
  • Lack of concentration.
  • In extreme cases, the person may even exhibit suicidal tendencies.

How to deal with teenage depression:
Do not neglect the situation if the teenager is suddenly exhibiting a changed behavior. Talk to them. Try to find out the cause of discomfort and anguish.

  • Parents should not pressurise their children. Appreciate their achievements, no matter how small. Never demoralize or compare your kids with others.
  • If your child is avoiding people, try to find out the reason behind their behavior.
  • If the child shows suicidal tendencies or is into unhealthy lifestyle habits, seek an expert help immediately. Your timely intervention can save your child from taking any drastic step.
  • Meditation and exercise can go a long way to lift up the mood and spirits of your child.
  • Treat your child with love and affection. This is what they need the most.

In case you have a concern or query you can always consult an expert & get answers to your questions!

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