Dealing With Depression
Teen DepressionIt's normal to feel sad and blue now and then. In fact, during your teen years, hormones and life is changing so fast, it can seem overwhelming to keep up with it.
Everyone has ups and downs from the normal stressors of life. Arguing with a friend, a breakup, a family problem, not making a team, doing poorly on a test can all lead to feelings of hurt, disappointment or sadness. These feelings can usually be experienced and moved through with time and self-care. Using your inner strength, family and friends for support and taking care of yourself can all be ways to move your mood to a better place.
Sometimes sadness doesn't seem to go away. If you notice it's affecting your grades and school, your home life, controlling your behavior, or your relationships, it might be depression. Depression is a strong mood that involves despair, sadness or hopelessness, can last for weeks, months or longer, and begins to interfere with your ability to live your life. The good news is you can get help and begin to feel better.
Depression can affect anyone, including teens, and it can affect how you think, what you do and don't do and your overall health. If you don't get help, it can stop you from getting the most out of life.
SymptomsLet's look at the "symptoms" of depression, or what it looks like in life. If you'd had several of these, and they have lasted for a couple of weeks or caused any big changes in what you do in life, it's time to take action. That might be just telling a family member about it. Your school counselor, a therapist or psychologist, a clergy member, your doctor or another trusted adult can also be people to turn to.
Depression Can Look Like This
- You feel sad or cry a lot and it doesn't go away. (It might seem like there's no reason for the sadness)
- You feel like you're no good and confidence is low. You are criticizing yourself.
- You are starting to have problems at school; your grades are going down, you're skipping classes; it's hard to feel motivated.
- Life seems meaningless -- you don't seem to care about anything in the future.
- You not in the mood to do the things you used to like-- like music, sports, being with friends, hanging out-- and you just want to be left alone.
- It's hard to concentrate, focusing is challenging
- Little things make you lose your temper, you feel irritable or anxious.
- Your sleep pattern changes; you start sleeping a lot more or you have trouble falling asleep at night. You might not feel like getting out of bed in the morning.
- Your eating habits change; you've lost your appetite or you eat a lot more.
- You feel a lack of energy, tired much of the time, or even restless
- You think about death, or feel like you're dying, or have thoughts about suicide.