If you notice changes in your teenager's mood, behavior, or physical well-being, it may be time to seek professional help. Teenage years are a stage in self-discovery, making a teen vulnerable to different triggers of depression. For example, bad grades, feeling unattractive, or bullying. While depression is not always easy to detect, every parent should be aware of warning signs. Fortunately, early intervention can often prevent more serious problems down the road. So, how can you tell if your teen needs depression treatment?
Teenagers who are depressed often isolate themselves from friends and family members. The teen will lack joy and engagement in things they used to enjoy. They will spend more time alone, avoiding social gatherings and events. An outgoing teen who suddenly becomes more withdrawn is likely to be suffering from depression.
Teenagers who are depressed may exhibit changes to their behavior, including aggression and acting out. Some teens may take part in risky activities or become more rebellious or aggressive towards their parents and teachers. They may also show signs of inappropriate sexual behavior or violence towards others.
Sad and Hopeless Disposition
Some teenagers with depression may seem sad for no reason at all, while others may feel hopeless about the future. They may also exhibit low self-esteem and lack of confidence, especially in academic or extracurricular activities.
This negative outlook becomes self-fulfilling since a reluctance to engage more in these activities leads to poor performance. For example, a teen who feels academically inadequate may feel no need to study for exams, leading to failed exams and further hopelessness. Depression treatment can help treat these negative thoughts.
Lack of Concentration and Dropping Grades
A teen with depression will often have trouble focusing on their schoolwork and may even begin to display symptoms of learning disabilities. They will have difficulty completing tasks that they once found easy, such as writing reports or completing math problems. Therefore, it is important to investigate a sudden drop in academic performance.
Alcohol and Substance Abuse
Alcohol and substance abuse is often an escape for underlying mental health issues, so if a teen has this problem, it could be a way of dealing with depression. If your teen is abusing alcohol or drugs, you must seek professional help.
If your teenage child shows any of these signs, it is better to take action and be on the safe side. Contact a mental health professional ASAP for more information about depression treatment options.