If you’re trying to identify symptoms of depression in teens, the teen years can make it extra challenging. Many of the symptoms of depression can mirror normal adolescent issues, such as increased appetite, lack of motivation, social struggles, etc.
Because upheaval is a normal part of adolescence, teen depression can be even more difficult to treat than depression in adults. Depression in teens adds another layer of challenges to an already challenging time of life.
Teen depression often coincides with negative self-talk and comparison, just as in adults. Teens may have increased risk factors, such as developing at a different rate than peers, comparing themselves through social media, or being bullied on social media or elsewhere.
One of the biggest problems with depression is that it can inhibit healthy development, which will lead to bigger problems later on. Teenagers should be developing a sense of self and outside interests. If they’re inhibited by depression, they’re more likely to develop anxiety, self-doubt, and insecurity, which can be self-fulfilling prophecies as they become adults.
The earlier teen depression is treated, the better the prognosis for adulthood. Medication is a legitimate option, but many parents and providers hesitate to use it during such formative years.
With or without medication, therapy can have a huge influence on helping adolescents manage and overcome depression, and reduce the stigma that sometimes comes with it. In therapy, our Christian counselors work with teens on developing a healthy sense of self, personal goals, and coping skills.
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