Depression can be crippling, not just when it comes to mental and emotional health, but physically. It can affect every aspect of a person’s life, at school, at home, at work, and at play. If you’re worried your teen is suffering from depression, there are ways to help.
At Genesis Psychiatric Solutions, board-certified psychiatrist Dr. Ifeanye Olele will meet your teen to understand their state of mind and accurately diagnose if they are suffering from depression.
Signs of depression
Depression is a mental illness. Naturally, it has side effects on mental health. If you notice your teen is displaying some or all of the following, it is possible they are fighting depression:
- Feeling guilty or worthless (may voice these thoughts)
- Loss of pleasure in things they used to enjoy (going through motions or opting out)
- Lack of determination or focus (often displayed as procrastination)
- Restlessness or anxiety (may show up as nervousness or unwillingness to do things)
- Suicidal ideation or thoughts, risky behavior, or even self harm
Even if you haven’t been able to pin down overt mental symptoms, your teen may display a range of physical symptoms linked to depression, which could include:
- Insomnia or restless sleep
- Fatigue or constant napping
- Loss of appetite or binging
- Weight fluctuations
- Changes in hygiene levels
When depression is untreated, it can cause a lot of health issues as the will to perform self-care slowly erodes. Depression can also increase risk of health issues like high blood pressure and/or heart disease, and can lower immune response, making it easier for illness to take hold.
Treating depressed teens
Depression can be deadly. More than half of all teens who suffer depression will attempt suicide at least once, which is why it is so critical to make sure your teen gets help as soon as possible.
There are multiple treatment options, including talk therapy, medication, and lifestyle changes.In most cases, a combination of these approaches combined with strong support for your teen will be what makes the difference in their lives.
Finding the right combination of treatments that works for your teen may take some time. Our entire team at Genesis Psychiatric Solutions is dedicated to helping you and your child find a path out of the darkness that is depression.
If you suspect your teen is struggling with depression, get in touch with us by calling the location closest to you, or request a consultation online. Our offices are in Fairfax and Alexandria, Virginia; Washington, DC; Los Angeles, California; and Boca Raton, Florida.