Depression Help for Teens
Teens are difficult to read to say the least. Their moods can change from one second to the next and even they do not know why so they sure cannot explain it to you! The truth is, teenagers are going through so many hormonal changes in their bodies that their moods are jumping around like an excited frog. So, how can you possibly tell if your teen is just being a teen or if they are depressed? That is a difficult question to answer because it depends on the teen and your relationship with your child. Even if you and your teen were best friends yesterday, he or she may hate you today. Not really, but they sure do act like it. This is usually just a hormonal thing but we cannot be absolutely certain so it is important to err on the side of caution with this situation.
Signs of Teen Depression
Most teenagers have bouts of sadness and aggravation just like the rest of us (only made worse due to their hormonal changes) but in some cases things can be worse than you originally thought. One way to tell is if your teenager has been sad or agitated for more than a couple of weeks. While it is normal for your teen to have moodiness, being continuously sad or angry for longer than 10-14 days is not normal. Here are some other symptoms of teen depression:
· Sleeping more than usual
· Crying for no obvious reason
· Isolation, avoiding other people and places
· Vague aches and pains
· Eating less or more than usual
· Weight loss or gain
· Not participating in normal daily activities
· Lack of hygiene care such as showering or changing clothes
· Restlessness or anxiety
· Chronic fatigue
· Unable to concentrate or make decisions
· Forgetting things
· Talking about death or hurting themselves or others
What You Can Do
Listen to your teen. Even if they are talking about things you do not understand or things that may seem trivial to you. Whatever is bothering your teen, it is serious to them so it should be serious to you too. It could just be that someone at school is teasing them or that they do not like their new teacher. However, if you continue to listen and encourage your teen to talk, he or she will feel more comfortable talking to you and will eventually reveal the underlying issue if there is one. Make time to spend with your teen one on one every day no matter how busy you are. We are all busy. But, your teen is more important than your job or your personal schedule. You can get another job but you cannot replace your teen. Talking to your child today instead of rushing off to hang out with your friends could make a big difference and can even be a life or death situation. Listen and hear what your teen is trying to tell you.
Talk to Someone Else
If you think your child is clinically depressed, you need to talk to a professional and schedule a time for your child to talk to them too. Even if you are a professional therapist yourself, you should have your teen talk to a therapist other than you if they are truly depressed. If your child does not want to go to an office to see a therapist, you can try online counseling which teens seem to relate to better. They are used to being online and will appreciate not having to leave the house or make an appointment. That’s right, no appointment needed — so contact them today!
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