Parenting is the most difficult job in the world and if you have a teenager at your house, then the task becomes 10 times more difficult. Since the teen years are the phase of your child’s life that creates a big picture of their future and their personality, it is very important to pay attention.
It is also the time when children have negative thoughts about themselves or start hurting themselves. This can lead to depression and overcoming this condition requires a lot of patience and time to understand their emotions. In this blog, we are going to discuss what are the signs you should be looking out for depression in teenagers and how can you overcome it.
Signs That Show Teenagers Are Suffering From Depression
While many children keep it to themselves, this may be the first sign that you can notice depression. If your child is quiet and does not feel like talking even about their favorite things, then they might be dealing with heavy thoughts. These thoughts can be about the changes in the body, some arguments with their friends, or lack of friends for that matter.
Often when the mind is not at peace, the body tends to gain or lose weight excessively. If your child is having withdrawal from food or is eating too much than their appetite, then it is a sign of mental illness. Try to incorporate daily exercise in their routine to help them keep active.
Communicating with teenagers does not come easy for either party. But working with them is much harder. When your child takes no interest in their favorite hobby or shows, it indicates that there is something wrong and they need attention. This can also be seen in the downfall of their grades in school.
When a child’s self-consciousness leads to negative thoughts about themselves, it is a clear sign of depression. Feeling hateful and worthless towards oneself requires you to have a serious conversation with your child. Neglecting this sign can stem from thoughts of suicide or harming themselves.
Often with busy schedules, parents tend to oversee the signs of depression. They may look normal from the outside but they might be having deep thoughts running around in their head. It is very important to look out for these signs and seek professional help for a better life.
How To Help Teenager With Depression
Looking out for the signs of depression is the first step to help teenagers. You need to understand their thought process to help them.
Listen To Understand, Not Criticize
Often parents think that the phase of teenagers is difficult and the thoughts they have during this time will also go away. But that does not happen when your child is not feeling themselves. When your child is struggling with their negative thoughts, you need to understand how they feel. Criticism will only backfire and push them to oblivion.
Emphasize Positive Outlook
While it is evident that negative thoughts will build a home if not interrupted, it is also important to emphasize a positive outlook toward life. Try to plan a team activity with them and a goal to achieve. With something to look forward to, they might open up about their negativity and give an insight on how to help them.
Regular exercising is not only good for your physical health but also mental health. It releases happy hormones that can induce positive thoughts in them. Encourage them for workouts, yoga sessions, or Zumba to get rid of suicidal thoughts. Remember to accompany them or have their friends join in for these physical activities to keep a check on them.
Seek Professional Help
When you see no progress from your involvement in teenagers’ behavior, then you should seek professional help. There are therapies like cognitive behavioral therapy, dialectical behavioral therapy, and interpersonal therapy that can help your child. The purpose of these therapies is to understand their behavioral patterns and signs about depression.
It will help them to clear their minds from self-harm and suicide and improve their relations with peers and families. Medications may also be prescribed to deal with depression along with therapy.