Have you ever wondered why most teenagers are usually unhappy and irritable? The life of a child changes when they become teens. Their moods swing like a pendulum due to hormonal imbalances and pressure in their environment. When left unchecked, they may start experiencing depression. Research studies have shown that an average of 15 percent of adults who reach age 21 have experienced at least an episode of mood disorder. Depression in teens can lead to huge problems such as difficulty in school, relationships, and lack of enjoyment in life. Depression is the leading cause of suicide in the US among teenagers.
It is a mental illness and not an attitude that an individual can snap out of or control. However, it is treatable with medication and psychotherapy. That’s why parents and tutors need to educate themselves about this disorder.
Reasons why teenagers and students are depressed
There are a lot of reasons why teenagers and college students are experiencing depression. Psychologists believe that there are a lot of factors that contribute to this mental disorder. They include genetics, hormones, trauma, and brain chemistry to name a few. Teenagers face a lot of challenges that contribute to depression. They include social media, bullying, early puberty, substance abuse, medical conditions, and challenges with self-esteem to name a few. Let’s discuss these issues.
1. Academic pressure
The pressure to get good grades and land a good job can negatively affect the mental health of teenagers. Apart from academic performance, most teens also experience stress linked to sports and other extracurricular activities. Students who are stressed due to academic performance are two times more likely to experience depression compared to those who aren’t stressed out. When you get help from Writix.com, you’ll make time for yourself and friends. You need to use service online to avoid stress and depression.
A teenager’s identity is largely influenced by the relationships they have with their peers and loved ones. For teenagers improving their social skills –often around their peers – bullying can be part of their lives. Close to 20 percent of college students have reported suffering from bullying. While a huge portion of bullying revolves around rumors, other common issues include physical aggression, property destruction, and physical aggression. Bullying can affect brain development and increase the chances of depression.
3. Social media
Social media is a fruit of technological advancement. When used well, it can uplift and bring people together. However, for teenagers and college students, social media can be a source of cyberbullying. Sleep disruptions, unrealistic expectations, and peer pressure. Social media links teenagers to each other. However, most of them have reported checking these sites obsessively. A study conducted recently found that individuals who used social media suffered from depression and lack of sleep.
The majority of college students experience trauma regularly. They come in different forms such as emotional, physical, and sexual abuse and neglect. Various research studies have shown that as much as 43 percent of girls and boys go through a trauma in their lifetime. The consequences of trauma can be felt depending on the severity, type, and frequency of the abuse.
Signs of depression in teens
Both teenagers and adults experience depression. While diagnosing this mental disorder is the same, the signs and symptoms are not the same among young students and adults. Some of the common signs of depression that teenagers show include:
- Poor self-esteem
- Experiencing feelings of guilt or blame
- Difficulty focusing
- Persistent boredom
- Suicidal thoughts
- Withdrawal from friends and family
- Lack of enjoyment in hobbies
In most instances, depression among teens is usually diagnosed by a psychologist or qualified physician. If it is suspected, the physician will start with physical examinations that include blood tests. Your physician will want to rule out other illnesses that might contribute to the symptoms. The teen will be evaluated psychologically. This usually involves filling out a questionnaire and discussing the severity of the symptoms.
Here are some of the ways that psychologists treat teen depression:
- Educate teens and parents about the available treatment options
- Develop a plan that includes the ideal treatment plan. The plan should function both at school and at home
- Come up with a safety plan in case the symptoms get worse when the treatment is initiated. At times, teens may start having suicidal thoughts.
- Monitor symptoms and prescribe antidepressant and nutrition treatment if needed. Family members should watch their loved ones close and inform the physician if the symptoms worsen.
Encourage the teenager to voice out their thoughts and concerns without fear of judgment. In most cases, young adults just want to be heard by the adults around them. Encourage them to consume nutritious meals, get regular exercise, and do their best in college.