In many families in Europe, America and us, in Russia, in the process of growing a child, we are separated from their parents. It often happens that the children, the daughters are busy with their own interests. The main authority between 10 and 12 years of age is friends, not family members and teachers this is a fact confirmed by many psychologists.
Mom and dad, tired at work, solving many of today’s daily problems do not find time for their children. A distancing begins, the alienation, which, in turn, leads to misunderstandings and irritation on both sides.
Adolescent depression is not caprices or whims, it is not a fleeting bad mood. This phenomenon is a real disease that requires timely and adequate treatment.
It is characterized by a long and persistent depressive state, depressed mood. It removes a teenager’s strength and desire to learn and practice sports or art, walk and communicate, in short, to live.
It is important that parents know what causes and signs, the possible consequences, as well as the symptoms and treatment of this condition in a child.
What is the danger?
Children in adolescence: it is not a gift, everyone knows it. Most of them are closed and aggressive, they focus on their feelings, they have some crazy ideas about the world order, they persistently defend, do not listen and do not perceive anyone’s opinion.
However, adolescent depression is something completely different.
This psychological illness is capable of destroying the essence of the young person’s personality, leading him to suicidal thoughts, and from them to action.
This image is aggravated by indifference, misunderstanding or pressure from parents. It is necessary to understand that to achieve unquestioning obedience at that age is impossible, and the neglect of the signs of a depressive state threatens the whole family with misfortune.
The symptoms of depression in a teenager
The hormonal changes that occur in a child’s body seriously affect their physical and mental state. Everyone from 12 to 17 can be rude, close the door, ignore an adult.
However, there are a number of phenomena that should make parents think.
The signs of adolescent depression are the following:
- Sadness, depression, hopelessness as the main characteristics of the state of mind.
- irritability and anger
- frequent tears
- stop communication with family and friends
- A young man abandons his hobbies, stops being interested in something, begins his studies.
- lack of appetite, sleep disorders
- persistent anxiety
- constant guilt
- feel like a worthless person
- The desire for solitude, even among those who used to be the soul of the company.
- lack motivation for anything
- fatigue, lethargy, apathy, fatigue
- Pains in the head, stomach, back due to the type of vegetative-vascular dystonia.
- concentration problems
- Thoughts about the possibility of interrupting their own lives.
Sometimes, a child conceals his condition as a family, parents find it difficult to see the signs of depression in adolescents. However, there are a number of indirect phenomena that will help mom and dad sound the alarm on time and make the right decision.
- The child runs away from home. Sometimes it’s just about talking about escape, but in any case, adults must understand that such words or actions are not provocations and whims, but a cry for help and a desperate desire to draw attention to themselves.
- Performance problems They can appear and have an excellent student. Before scolding your son or daughter for being lazy, make sure this is not a loss of concentration, a disturbing state, or problems with teachers or peers, forcing the young person to skip lessons and ignore assignments. This also includes forgetfulness and irresponsibility, arising due to the inability to concentrate.
- Problems with alcohol or drugs as an option to escape from the cruel reality and the desire to forget their grief. This phenomenon requires the intervention of a specialist, a professional treatment and, what is more important, support and not criticism at the exit.
- He doubts himself It always increases during adolescence, and in case of depression can come, for example, to refuse to leave home.
- Reckless acts By throwing adrenaline, a teenager may unconsciously want to block his melancholy. Experiments that are dangerous for life, walking on roofs or construction sites, extreme handling, participation in an offense also testify that adolescent depression occurs.
- Internet addiction. Affirming himself in social networks, the child tries to escape reality, forget what is really happening to him. You can go beyond the limit, put on public display your stupid or dangerous actions, ambiguous statements, candid photos. Psychiatry relates this phenomenon to non-chemical forms of addiction that require serious treatment.
- Aggression and violence. Often characteristic of those who were beaten or ridiculed. Talk about the impotence of a young person or the inability to solve their own problems.
Who is prone to depression?
Of course, in the risk group, the children who are registered with a psychiatrist, who have had some psychological anomaly since childhood. Hormonal storms in adolescence will affect them strongly enough.
Those who behave asocially, have a pedagogical abandonment, can fall under the diagnosis of adolescent depression. These are types of dysfunctional families, orphanages, those who are registered with the police.
However, the most disturbing group are sensitive, empathic and insecure people since childhood. The fact is that they can be successful and fun, sociable and optimistic up to a certain age. But there comes a time when personal awareness takes place, the young man realizes that the whole world will not love him unconditionally, he sees his own defects, real or imaginary.
At this point, depressive symptoms may begin to manifest, which is important for parents to see on time.
How to behave parents?
Unfortunately, the prevention of depression in adolescents is not considered important in many families. Parents think that they have the right to control the adult’s life, be committed to their own issues and problems and not deepen their world.
Therefore, when signs of a dangerous condition appear, mom and dad often lose or tighten the screws.
It is necessary to understand that it is impossible to achieve trust and openness in this way. The adolescent will lock himself up even stronger or will enter into open conflict with his parents.
These are the steps that it is important to take for a favorable outcome of the situation.
- Talk with your son. This should be done gently and carefully and avoid unnecessary notes and questions. All this will only close the adolescent, reinforce it even more in the thought that nobody understands their experiences. It is very useful to connect the practice of active listening: the father does not ask questions at all, but talks about the problems and experiences of a son or daughter in an affirmative way. The most important thing that we should not forget is that instructions are not only not useful, but that depression is also harmful, a disease, and we do not scold a person for having contracted the flu and it is at the temperature.
- Let your friend know that you love him for who he is, that you will always be there. This principle is called unconditional acceptance. Its use allows the young person to know that he is loved by his mother and father on his own, as he is and not by the way they invented themselves.
- If a teenager is interested in one or another subculture, do not judge their choice, no matter how stupid it may seem. Remember that at the age of 20, very few people remain within those areas, and at this time, for your child, this music, clothes and movies seem serious. Try talking to him about what attracted him to the ranks of the followers, for example, hard rock, ask about the features, find what he finds beautiful / interesting. At the same time, it is important not to be a hypocrite and not express a false delight: be honest with your child.
- Do not neglect the feelings of a son or daughter, no matter how stupid they may seem. A serious attitude and respect for the child’s feelings will affect their communication and the degree of confidence in their process. If at this moment, for example, the mockery of classmates seems stupid, try to remember at the same age and see how painful such a situation can be.
What to do
Whatever the cause of adolescent depression, it is important that parents realize that it is a disease and that they need treatment. The immediate appeal to a specialist requires a prolonged and progressive apathy, the refusal to eat for several days, constant tears and, even more, traces of cuts on the hands or some other type of violence.
A child can express in his work or words the desire to commit suicide. Shouting and swearing does not make sense, it will only aggravate the situation.
How is the treatment?
The specialist does the following:
- diagnose the problem with the help of special tests, interviews, and there are analyzes and neurotic studies
- prescribes medications: concealers, hormones, vitamins and antidepressants are taken only by prescription
- Offers psychotherapeutic sessions – group or individual.
From depression in adolescence, a favorable result is possible if detected early and the treatment is controlled by specialists. But the most important condition for recovery is the unconditional understanding and support of loved ones.
We hope that now, if necessary, you can identify the causes of depression in adolescents and help them get out of this state quickly.