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What are the Symptoms of Depression in Teenagers?


Depression typically hits people between the ages of 15 and 30, which means that the already awkward and perpetually uncomfortable teenage years that many face could be made all the worse when they have to battle against this unfortunate mental condition. Although irritability and annoyance is a common trait in teenagers as they make the slow and steady transition from adolescence to adulthood, there are times when it is more than “just a phase.”

Typically, depression develops in teenagers when they begin to feel a certain sense of worthlessness and inadequacy build up inside of them. This could be related to their grades, social life or any number of other factors. That, plus an inane sense that nobody understands them (friends and family included) often leaves them feeling alone and with few welcome ears to talk to.

Generally, depression-like symptoms begin with the lack of motivation. Teens may end up spending hours upon hours in their room doing nothing, ultimately leading to damaged relationships and poor attitudes in school. Sometimes, these depression symptoms can manifest themselves in more series ways like self-harm and criminal activity. Here are some of the more recognizable symptoms of the condition via WebMD.

• apathy
• complaints of pains, including headaches, stomachaches, low back pain, or fatigue
• difficulty concentrating
• difficulty making decisions
• excessive or inappropriate guilt
• irresponsible behavior -- for example, forgetting obligations, being late for classes, skipping school
• loss of interest in food or compulsive overeating that results in rapid weight loss or gain
• memory loss
• preoccupation with death and dying
• rebellious behavior
• sadness, anxiety, or a feeling of hopelessness
• staying awake at night and sleeping during the day
• sudden drop in grades
• use of alcohol or drugs and promiscuous sexual activity
• withdrawal from friends

The most important thing when dealing with a depressed teen is letting them know that despite how they feel, they are not alone. From there, it’s absolutely vital to seek out a mental health specialist who can appraise the situation and let everyone involved know what the best treatment options available are, and how to obtain them.

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