Saturday, September 15, 2012

Symptoms of Depression in Teens Should Never Be Ignored

By Jessie Olberding

It is very important for all parents to recognize the signs and symptoms of depression in teens. If you suspect you are seeing symptoms of depression in your child, you should not wait to see if things improve on their own. Depression in teens can lead to suicide attempts, dangerous behavior, or acts of violence against others. Depression is a painful condition, but it is treatable if you are able to recognize the symptoms and get help in time.

If a teen shows any depression signs then the individual should be evaluated by a medical professional who specializes in mental disorders. Many parents mistake these signs as being normal for a teenager who is growing and changing but they are serious and require evaluation and treatment. Never ignore a teen who discusses dying or who talks of suicide. The teenager may be crying out for help in the only way that they know, and ignoring these symptoms can have serious or even fatal consequences.

If you notice changes in sleeping or eating habits, isolation from friends and family, complaints of aches or pains that can't be explained, or anxiety or irritability in your teen, these could be symptoms of depression. These symptoms should not be taken lightly and you should schedule an appointment with a doctor. Teenagers suffering from depression may not feel comfortable communicating their feelings to family members, so you need to learn to recognize the symptoms for yourself.

Changes in school grades and a lack of interest in usual friends and activities that used to be enjoyed can be a sign that a teenager is becoming depressed and may need treatment. Another sign that should cause concern is risky behavior. This can include drug use, drinking, numerous sexual partners, and other risk taking that puts the health or welfare of the teen at risk.

Many parents think that these signs are just a phase and that their teen will snap out of it eventually. Unfortunately, this just isn't true most of the time. Most teens will need help if they are going to get through this. Don't be afraid and don't wait to get help for your child.

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