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It is estimated that approximately four percent of adolescents get seriously depressive each year. Clinical depression is a serious illness that can affect anybody, including teenagers, altering thoughts, feelings, behavior, and overall health.

Most people with depression can be treated, but the majority of depressive people never get the help they need. When depression is not treated, it can get worse, last longer, and cause many problems. One in five children has a diagnosable mental, emotional or behavioral disorder, and depression is commonly reported. As many as one in every 33 children and one in eight adolescents may suffer from depression. That is why it is very important to recognize teen depression, and to be able to respond to it adequately.

How to recognize teen depression?

Since teen depression is one of the most serious behavioral problems among troubled teenagers, it is essential that parents recognize it. It is a parent’s duty to recognize when a pre-adolescent or adolescent child is depressive, because treatment is more effective with early intervention. The more serious consequences of untreated depression can include an increased risk of suicide, which is not so rare. That is why any indication that a child has been suffering from depression for six months or more should be treated the same way as signs of physical disease in a child. Parents need to seek help before more serious indications arise.

Typical signs of depression involve an adolescent feeling low most of the time, and being irritable, especially when pressed to be more active. If a parent notices weight loss or weight gain, insomnia or an excessive need for sleep, or low energy, the condition needs to be reported to a doctor. When a child says things that indicate low self-esteem or feelings of worthlessness, and when suicidal thoughts, ideation, or threats occur, these could be signs of teen depression.

A noticeable drop in grades, in social activities, and in interaction with peers, a sudden change in friends, and a low frustration level are also depression signs. Lack of interest in a child’s usual activities, whether it is social, family, academic, or extracurricular activities, is also a symptom of depression. If your child exhbitis any od these signs indicating depression, and stays in this state of mind for more than six months, it is time to seek outside therapy.

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