The teenage years are a difficult time in life. Not only are teenagers experiencing hormonal changes, but they are likely experiencing things for the first time like their first love, peer pressure, and the pressure to succeed in school. Statistics show that before reaching adulthood, approximately 20 percent of teens will experience depression. At Hope and Healing for Life, we understand that approaching your teen about this can be difficult.
Symptoms of Teen Depression
This is serious because depression increases a teen’s risk for attempting suicide by 12 times. It can be hard to discuss these issues with your teenager. However, parents need to break through that barrier and get their teen to talk about their emotions and experiences. The first step should be to determine whether your teen is experiencing depression or not. The warning signs are:
- Sleeping excessively or changing sleep patterns
- Engaging in uncharacteristic behaviors or rebellious behavior
- Apathy; not caring about things that maybe they used to care about
- Difficulty concentrating and making decisions
- Inappropriate or excessive guilt
- Irresponsible behavior
- Drop in grades
- Withdrawal from friends and family
- Sadness, anxiety or a feeling of hopelessness
If you have noticed some of the symptoms above in your teen, it is important to communicate your concern with your teen and determine whether it is depression or not. In a loving and non-judgmental way, ask your teen about what he or she is feeling. Be honest and tell the teen that you have seen signs of depression and that you are there for support and to help.
Teen Therapy St. Paul MN
Your teen may deny it, be embarrassed or worried about what the outcome will be if he or she admits to feeling depressed or suicidal. Adolescent therapy is always an option if your teen simply doesn’t feel comfortable speaking to you about the issue.
As a parent, it can be hard to relate to your teen, but we recommend always approaching the situation with care and respect if you suspect depression. Don’t hesitate to contact us at Hope & Healing for Life if you think you need help through this process.