Teen Depression


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Teen Depression in America – Troubling Statistics & Trends
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Overview - Mayo Cllinic
Teen Depression - NIH 
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Regular Sadness vs. Depression - Teen Health
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Teen Depression in America: Troubling Statistics and Facts

What is frequently written off as normal teenage angst may really be teen depression, and if left untreated could lead to more serious conditions with antisocial behaviors. Diagnosing depression in teens is complicated by the physical changes in this stage of development, yet there are warning signs and options for help. Below you will find a long list of eye-opening teen depression statistics covering prevalence, symptoms, warning signs of teen depression, treatment options, recovery rates and more.

Teen Depression Statistics

  • Suicide is the third leading cause of death for the 12-18 age demographic
  • 14% of teens suffered at least one episode of depression within the last 12 months
  • 20% of teens will experience depression before adulthood
  • 10-15% of teens have some symptoms of teen depression at any one time
  • 80% of teens don’t receive help for their depression
  • Female teens are twice as likely to have symptoms of depression, as male teens of the same age.

Most Common Types of Teen Depression

1. Major Depressive Disorder (MDD) Someone with MDD will experience episodes of intense depression (lasting weeks to years), separated by periods of relatively stable moods. MDD can make it difficult to work, study, sleep, eat, and enjoy friends or activities.

2.Dysthymic Disorder Teens with Dysthymia experience depressive episodes that are less intense than in MDD but are long-lasting—at least one year or longer.

3. Bipolar Disorder (Manic Depression) Bipolar disorder is characterized by cycling mood changes ranging from extreme emotional highs to extreme lows—major depression to mania with high energy. This is a serious condition that can cause sleeplessness, hallucinations, psychosis, grandiose delusions, or paranoid rage. Bipolar disorder sometimes has a genetic component and can run in families.

4. Adjustment Disorder Adjustment disorder is a short-term condition that people find themselves in when they struggle coping with, or adjusting to, a particular source of stress such as, divorce or death of a loved one.

Causes of Teen Depression

Depression in teens can stem from a variety of reasons:

  • Academic stress
  • Peer pressure
  • Romantic problems
  • Traumatic events
  • Divorcing parents
  • Genetic factors
  • Family financial struggles
  • Physical/emotional neglect

Source: www.nimh.nih.gov/health/topics/depression/index.shtml#part2)

How Does Depression Affect Teen Life?

Depression can lead to other problems as well.

  • 30% of teens suffering from depression also develop substance abuse problems
  • 15% of teens suffering with depression eventually develop bipolar disorder
  • Up to 10% of teens have conduct disorder as a result of depression

Conduct disorder is a range of antisocial behaviors towards others.

  • 6%-10% of boys
  • 2%-9% of girls

Conduct disorder can lead to:

  • Aggression with people and animals
  • Destruction of property
  • Deceitfulness or theft
  • Serious violations of rules

Depression can also cause teens to:

  • Create family conflicts
  • Have problems at school
  • Run away
  • Become violent
  • Participate in reckless behavior
  • Abuse drugs or alcohol
  • Develop internet addictions
  • Become suicidal

If Left Untreated, Depression Can Evolve into Other Serious Conditions

Ignoring depression can be dangerous. Unfortunately, 80 percent of teens don’t seek help for their depression. Depression can turn into a more serious condition for your teenager if left untreated.

  • 20% with major depressive disorder (MDD) develop psychotic symptoms
  • 15% of teens with depression eventually develop bipolar disorder
  • 66% of teens with major depression also suffer from another mental disorder, such as persistent mild depression, addiction to drugs or alcohol, anxiety, or antisocial behaviors

Teenage Depression and Suicide

Suicide is the third leading cause of death among people ages 15-24.

  • The rate of suicide in America has tripled over the last 60 years
  • About 19% of young people contemplate or attempt suicide each year
  • 14%-24% of young and young adults have self-injured at least once
  • More teens die from suicide than from cancer, heart disease, AIDS, birth defects, stroke, pneumonia, influenza, and chronic lung disease combined
  • 5,400 estimated suicide attempts are made each day by teens in the United States

Signs of Teen Depression

Four out of 5 teens who attempt suicide have given clear warning signs as to their intentions.

Common warning signs of depression are:

  • Sadness that lasts most of the day
  • Crankiness and irritability
  • Inability to have fun doing things that used to be fun
  • Acting younger than their age
  • Feeling tired all the time
  • Trouble sleeping through the night
  • Changes in appetite
  • Drop in grades
  • Lack of empathy
  • Lack of motivation
  • Low self-esteem

teen depression major red flags

Tips for Talking with Teens

Communicate with your teenager to understand what is going on in their life. Let them know you are there for them no matter what. It’s okay if you need some guidance talking to your teen. After all, teenagers don’t come with instructions. Here are a few tips for successful communication with your teenager:

  • Offer genuine support
  • Be gentle but persistent with requests
  • Listen without lecturing
  • Validate their feelings
  • Find a depression specialist
  • Stay involved in treatment
  • Provide appropriate medication
  • Encourage physical activity and a balanced diet
  • List to and support your teen
  • Educate your teen on the risks or drug and alcohol abuse
  • Educate yourself about depression

Options for Help

Only 1 in 5 depressed teens receive help. There are many options available for teens facing mental health issues. Rawhide Boys Ranch is one of them.

Residential Treatment Success

Residential treatment has been very successful for individuals battling depression.

  • 80% of adolescents with depression improve during residential treatment
  • 72%-97% of parents reported a reduction in internalizing problems from admission to discharge after residential treatment

Don’t let depression affect your teenager. Open a healthy line of communication with your teenager and find out the problems they are facing and what is going on in their life. If your teenager is struggling with depression, there is help. Your teenager does not have to battle depression on their own.

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Source: www.rawhide.org/blog/wellness/teen-depression-in-america-troubling-statistics-trends/

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