Signs of Teen Depression

Typically, teens are characterized by being moody and turbulent. Because of this, it is difficult to distinguish between normal teenage hormones and depression. Depression can cause severe damage, and in some cases even suicide. It is so important to monitor your adolescent! There are some major red flags that every parent should be aware of, and if your teen exhibits multiple signs, it is important to reach out and help them.

Red Flags:

Excess amounts of time spent alone: Teenagers often like to spend time alone in their room listening to music, writing, etc. In and of itself, this is not a red flag. However, if it becomes excessive, you should take note. For example, missing out on social events, skipping family dinners and being “sick” all the time, are signs that your teen is depressed. Extreme isolation is never a good thing.

Frequently engaging in risky behaviors: If your teen is smoking, partying, drinking or engaging in other risky behaviors, of course you are going to be furious. However, realize that there could be something deeper going on. Depressed adolescents have the mentality: “Who cares if this hurts me?” or “Nothing matters anyways, so why not?” Instead of unleashing your wrath, try and create a comforting environment to talk to them. Helping them to open up about their deeper issues can save them.

Backing out of a favorite hobby: If suddenly your teen has dropped his/her favorite activity without an explanation, you should look into the situation. Depression makes teens lose their zest for life. It puts a black cloud over things that used to bring them joy. “Depression weakens the reward system in the brain, which means that teens experience less pleasure performing activities they used to enjoy,” (Loewen, 2015)

If you think you teen is clinically depressed, don’t think it is something you have to handle on your own. Talk with your teen about counseling. If you give them the choice, teens will often willingly go talk with someone. Once their open and willing, contact South Denver Psychotherapy to set up an appointment!

“7 Signs Your Teen May Be Depressed.” The Stir. N.p., n.d. Web. 10 June 2015.