Depression usually presents itself in feelings of helplessness, sadness and very low self-esteem. The feelings manifest themselves in outward appearances as well so even an untrained eye will have an inkling of what the person is going through. But when depression affects teenagers, the signs can be totally different. Not every depressed teen will look depressed and may instead display aggression, rage and hostility. Therefore, knowing what to look out will go far in helping teens deal with and overcome depression.
The teenage years are a time of conflict. Trying to fit in without really knowing their identities, peer pressure, hormonal changes and conflicts at home, in some cases, all work to increase the risk of depression settling in.
If you suspect your teenage daughter or son of being depressed, make note of how long he or she has been acting ‘off’. Long-lasting changes are an indication of deeper problems and aren’t the same as ordinary teenage mood swings. Some teens may complain of aches and pains which cannot be diagnosed despite medical check-ups. Others will withdraw from parents more than usual; will ditch their present friends and start hanging out with new groups they never associated with.
If the depression is severe, teens can harbor thoughts of death and suicide. They may have difficulty concentrating on various tasks and lose interest in activities they once immersed themselves in.