Screening teen depression symptoms is very important, and in this article, the website of the Hamkade Counseling Center, a provider of psychological counseling and face-to-face counseling, is examined.
Whether it’s the excitement of gaining independence or the stress of peer pressure, a teen’s life is full of ups and downs. When you were a teenager, it was hard to balance the highs and lows of school and your relationships with your parents and friends. And if the descending spiral becomes too overwhelming, you may feel sad, anxious, or overwhelmed. You may also lose interest in things you once enjoyed and avoid seeing friends. When this lasts for two weeks or more, it is a sign that you may be depressed. It is a serious condition that has both physical and mental effects. It can affect every part of your life, including how much you eat and sleep.
Depression is a very treatable disease, but it is difficult to treat on its own. It’s not something you can “get out of” just by trying to be happier. Treatments such as psychotherapy, also called talk therapy, can be very effective. Some guidance and support can be invaluable and help you feel less lonely. So, if you think you may be depressed, you can talk to a trusted adult about how you are feeling.
What are the symptoms of depression in adolescents?
Depression can occur at any age, but symptoms most often begin in the teenage years or early adulthood. Symptoms of depression in teens are different from symptoms of depression in adults, but they are similar. From puberty onwards, your body and mind undergo many changes. Changing hormone levels also have a direct impact on our mood. These are normal changes, but they can lead to many complex emotions. It can be difficult to talk about or understand your thoughts and feelings, which can be confusing at times. If you suffer from depression, the following symptoms may be familiar to you. You don’t have to experience all of these symptoms, but depression usually includes a few of them:
- Feeling restless and mood swings
- Lots of sadness, crying and sadness
- You feel hopeless, or that everything in your life is going wrong
- Less interest or enjoyment of your usual activities
- Constant boredom with no motivation to get out of boredom
- low energy
- Difficulty concentrating
- Low performance in school
- Withdrawing from friends and family
- Low self-esteem or feelings of guiltExcessive sensitivity to rejection or failure
- Feeling more irritable, angry and hostile
- relationship problems
- Difficulty communicating
- Self-harm or suicidal thoughts or actions
Warning signs of depression in teens
If you have your period, you may notice that your mood changes throughout the month due to hormonal changes. For example, you will usually feel more anxious, weak, and emotional before your period begins. Many of these symptoms can be attributed to PMS, but they can also be part of depression. In addition to paying attention to the above signs, caregivers who are concerned about a change in their teen’s mood or behavior can also look for the following warning signs:
- Frequent complaints of physical ailments, such as headaches or stomachaches
- Significant changes in eating or sleeping patterns
- Frequent absence from school or difficulty eating at school
- Excessive consumption of alcohol or drugs
Below we examine the main symptoms of depression in more detail.
Feeling upset or mood swings
A symptom of depression in adolescents is depressed mood. Depressed mood is a feature of depression and many people recognize it as a major symptom. Depression often involves a very low mood. Bad mood is deeper than normal sadness. In addition to feeling sad, many people feel hopeless, worthless, guilty, or caught up, as if they can’t get out of the mood no matter how hard they try.
Lots of sadness or crying
When you are depressed, you may feel more deeply sad than usual. It can be difficult to control your emotions and you may have trouble regulating them. This may mean that you sometimes feel like crying, but you’re not quite sure why, or that you cry more easily than usual. This can be embarrassing at the time, but know that everyone feels sad sometimes and crying is a normal emotional reaction.
Feeling hopeless is a symptom of depression in adolescents
Sometimes depression can keep you from feeling happy. It can reduce the knowledge that life is getting better. It can make you feel hopeless, or that everything in your life is going wrong. You may find that you no longer care about your appearance or your hygiene, or you may feel that bad circumstances will never change knowing that you used to feel more hopeful.
Read more about: Tips to deal with social depression.
You are less interested in your usual activities
One of the main symptoms of depression is a loss of interest or enjoyment in the things you used to enjoy or the routine of life. You may find that you give up the gym, sports, or other activities because they no longer make you feel the same.
Constant fatigue and low energy
Being bored is common in depression, especially when you lose interest in the things you used to enjoy. These symptoms include a lack of interest in finding ways to deal with boredom. Excessive tiredness or fatigue and low energy can also add to this feeling. It may seem that you have nothing to do, and even if you do, you do not have the energy to do it. You may also feel like you’re thinking slower than before.
Difficulty concentrating is a symptom of depression in adolescents
It may be difficult to focus on homework, or you may have trouble keeping up a conversation or even watching TV. You find it easy to get distracted and seem to get distracted without even realizing it.
Low performance in school
You may notice a drop in your score. There are many reasons for this, including:
- Difficulty concentrating on homework
- Feeling distracted by disturbed emotions
- You feel like you don’t care what you’re doing in school, or that you’re failing anyway, so you don’t want to try.
Frequent absenteeism from school can also result in lower grades. Feeling angry or irritable can also contribute, and you may find that you are having more problems at school. You may feel guilty about these things, but don’t worry – it’s really hard to keep your score high when you’re struggling with your feelings.
One of the symptoms of depression in teens is low self-esteem. Depression usually manifests as low self-esteem. This includes feelings of failure, feelings of “not being good enough,” blame or guilt when things don’t go well. Struggling with your inner critic? Read about the fighting methods again here.
Agitation or anger
You may easily get angry at anything – friends, family, yourself, or the world. Anger is a symptom of depression more often in boys than in girls, but it can affect all races.
Skeeping from friends and family
Avoid family gatherings, decline invitations or withdraw from friends, and spend more time alone – these are all signs of depression. Depression can make you feel lonely, and no one understands what’s going on, making it difficult to communicate with others.
Physical symptoms of depression in teens
Depression often has physical effects on your body. This may include:
- unexplained headache
- dizziness or lightheadedness
- Back pain
- Menstrual problems
Changes in eating or sleeping patterns
You may stay up all night watching TV, find it difficult to wake up for school, or fall asleep during the day. Your eating patterns may change, too. Unexplained weight loss or gain is a symptom of depression. Sometimes drastic changes in eating habits are a sign of an eating disorder. If you suspect that you may have an eating disorder, help is available. The National Eating Disorders Association offers some helpful tools and tips for seeking treatment.
Alcohol and drug abuse
Some people use alcohol or drugs as a way of dealing with difficult emotions. It can progress into a substance use disorder that can complicate the situation. If you have both depression and a substance use disorder, it is important that you get treatment for both. Read about treating substance use disorders here.
Thoughts of self-harm or suicide are a symptom of depression in adolescents
When it’s hard to talk about your feelings, you can express them by hurting your body. It may be dealing with feelings of anger, frustration, exhaustion, or numbness. Some people suffer from delusions of death, that is, they feel that they want to die or not be alive, but without thinking about harming themselves or killing themselves. Talking to a mental health professional can help you understand self-harming behaviors and find ways to deal with them. It is important to note that self-harm is not always associated with suicidal thoughts or actions. If you have suicidal thoughts, seek medical help immediately. Remember that you are not alone and that the resources are there for you.
You may like to read: How to train your brain to avoid unwanted thoughts?
Adolescent depression diagnosis
After examining the symptoms of depression in adolescents, we will diagnose it. If you think you or a teen you know has depression, a doctor or mental health professional can diagnose and treat it. It is best to find someone trained to work with teens. If you are not sure how to find someone, you can contact our experts at the Hamkade Counseling Center. To diagnose depression, your doctor or therapist will talk with you about what you’ve been going through and how long you’ve had these symptoms. They may also want to talk to your parents. Of course, if you are satisfied.
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