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Teenager Depression and Moodiness

Don`t confuse moodiness with depression

These days, we recognize more and more that the pressures put on our children do indeed bring on depression. There was a time that if a teenager — or an adult for that matter — suffered from depression, it was kept silent, and only certain members of the family were aware of the problem (if they were aware at all).

Today, that is no longer the case. There has been so much research done in the area of depression that it is now an “open” topic. Thankfully, teenagers are more aware that they are not alone with their feelings or problems and that help is available.

Depressed Young Girl with HangoverTeenagers are often moody. That is a natural part of being a teenager, and it is caused by the chemical changes in the brain as they go through puberty. However, moodiness should not be confused with depression — and vice versa.

The symptoms of depression in teenagers include:

•    Irritability anger or hostility
•    Tearfulness
•    Crying
•    Withdrawal from friends, family, and usual activities
•    Sadness or hopelessness
•    Changes in sleeping patterns
•    Changes in appetite
•    Agitation
•    Restlessness
•    Lack of motivation
•    Fatigue
•    Difficulty focusing
•    Difficulty making decisions
•    Thoughts of suicide and increased thoughts of death in general

Teenager Depression SpecialistAside from these general symptoms of depression, one must be aware that teenagers express their feelings in ways that are different than most adults. For example, your child may start experiencing problems at school, run away from home, start experimenting with and abusing drugs or alcohol, develop an eating disorder, become addicted to the Internet, injure themselves on purpose, become violent, have a general reckless behavior, or attempt suicide.

Treatment for a depressed teen starts at home, where the parents need to discover whether the child is depressed or not or whether something else may be causing the problem.

It is important that your teen understands that he or she is loved and accepted and that you are there for them. An appointment with a family doctor is needed, and he or she will most likely point you to a specialist that is qualified to deal with teenagers depression.

A specialist is best-qualified to deal with teenager depression

Teen Bipolar Disorder and Their Unique Challenges

Teen bipolar disorder is diagnosed more frequently.

bipolar-imagesBecause of the unique challenges, Teen bipolar disorder is diagnosed more frequently each year – as it should be. Manic depression is always a serious disorder, but when younger people are in the throes of the disease, it poses some additional challenges. Let us look at some of the unique problems of handling teen bipolar disorder.

First, we should probably take a moment to discuss what bipolar disorders are. In the simplest of terms, one is bipolar when they cycle between deep emotional lows and inappropriate emotional highs. Those who are bipolar experience periods of depression and, on the other end of the emotional spectrum, episodes of outright mania. Behavior on both ends is often potentially dangerous, and this illness can be exceptionally challenging for anyone.

Teen bipolar disorder refers to cases of the disorder diagnosed in young people.

Manic depression is difficult for any sufferer, but teens often have a more difficult time than others do. There are a few reasons.

First, the teen years are a period during which self-confidence is already often lacking. It is a trying period of self-discovery for emotionally healthy kids. There are those who try to take the gauntlet of issues, and learning experiences that are essential to the phase of life while simultaneously suffering from a debilitating mental health issue. This is not surprisingly, but can be quite traumatized by the experience.

This trauma is multiplied, in some sense, by the fact that younger people are yet to develop solid coping skills. Bipolar disorder can adversely affect even the most world-weary adult, but when it occurs with a younger person, they may be totally blindsided by its challenges.

Additionally, the nature of the age makes teen bipolar disorder more difficult for families and loved ones to spot the illness. Hormonal changes and social pressures often make teens “moody.” It can be hard for many parents to distinguish between manic depressive tendencies and traditional teen behavior. Catching the disease early in its development is always preferable, but when manic depression strikes a teenager, that can be extremely difficult.

Third, teen bipolar disorder takes place at a horrible time in terms of social development. Kids in this age group are involved with school, activities and socialization that can help them to learn how to function successfully as adults. That learning process can be short-circuited when a child is simultaneously dealing with manic depression.

Fortunately, teen bipolar disorder is treatable. Pharmaceutical and cognitive therapies can help bring the condition under control, allowing the victim to experience a tremendously improved quality of life. Successful treatment of the problem does require professional medical intervention. If one is, or knows, a teen who is exhibiting signs of a potential bipolar disorder, medical intervention is essential.

Although no mental health condition is “easy,” circumstances can create additional layers of challenge. Such is the case with teen bipolar disorder.