A pproximately 1 out of 15 teenagers get seriously depressed each year.

Everyone feels sad or blue now and then, but if you're sad most of the time, or if you feel 'down' more than you feel okay, ask yourself if being sad is giving you any problems with:

your grades, school or work
your ability to concentrate
your relationships with your family and friends
controlling your behavior in other ways
alcohol, drugs, or sex

If you said yes to all of these, the problem may be depression. The good news -- you can get treatment and feel better.

What is Depression?

Depression is a type of mental disorder that affects a person’s mood. It can affect your thoughts, feelings, behavior, and overall health. Normal feelings fall along a continuum from mild to intense, and the same is true of depression. It’s normal to respond to losses in ones life with sadness and gloom. But when these feelings block a person from performing their everyday activities or are out of line with the reality of a person’s life, they are considered symptoms of a 'depressive disorder'.

Depression can affect anybody, including teenagers. Most people with depression can be helped with treatment, but many depressed people never get the help they need. When depression isn’t treated, it can get worse, last longer, and prevent you from getting the most out of your life. Remember, you're only a teenager once.

How do I know when I'm depressed?   How can I tell if a friend is depressed?

First, there are two kinds of depression: The sad kind, called major depression, or dysthymia; and manic-depression or bipolar illness, when feeling down and depressed alternates with being speeded-up and sometimes acting reckless.

If you or a friend have had several of these symptoms, and they've lasted several weeks, or cause a big change in your routine, you should talk to someone who can help, like a psychologist, or your school counselor!

When You're Depressed...

You feel sad or cry a lot and it doesn't go away.
You feel guilty for no real reason; you feel like you're no good; you've lost your confidence.
Life seems meaningless or like nothing good is ever going to happen again.
You have a negative attitude a lot of the time, or it seems like you have no feelings.
You don't feel like doing a lot of the things you used to like -- like music, sports, being with friends, going out -- and you want to be left alone most of the time.
It's hard to make up your mind. You forget lots of things, and it's hard to concentrate.
You get irritated often. Little things make you lose your temper; you overreact.
Your sleep pattern changes; you start sleeping a lot more or you have trouble falling asleep at night. Or you wake up really early most mornings and can't get back to sleep.
Your eating habits change; you've lost your appetite or you eat a lot more.
You feel restless and tired most of the time.
You think about death, or feel like you're dying, or have thoughts about committing suicide.

If You Have Manic-Depression...

You feel high as a kite... like you're "on top of the world".
You get unreal ideas about the great things you can do... things that you really can't do.
Thoughts go racing through your head; you jump from one subject to another, and you talk a lot, sometimes very quickly.
You're a nonstop party, constantly running around.
You do too many wild or risky things: with driving, with spending money, with sex, etc.
You're so "wired" that you don't need much sleep or you don't sleep at all some nights.
You're rebellious or irritable and can't get along at home or school, at work, or with your friends and family.

Talk To Someone About Depression

If you think you're depressed... TALK TO SOMEONE! This is nothing to be embarked or ashamed of. If you are concerned about depression in yourself or a friend, TALK TO SOMEONE WHO CAN HELP. There are many people who you can talk to:

a psychologist
your school counselor
your parents, or a trusted family member
your health care provider
a professional at a mental health center
a teacher or clergy person

Treatment For Depression

Having depression doesn't mean that a person is weak, or a failure, or isn't really trying... it means they need treatment.

Most people with depression can be helped with COUNSELING, provided by a professional psychologist, and some are helped with counseling and medication.

COUNSELING, or psychotherapy, means talking about feelings with a trained psychologist who can help you change the relationships, thoughts, or behaviors that are causing the depression. Think about it, you feel depressed because you think your life is bad. What if you're wrong? What if you're missing all the good things around you? What if your future holds a lot more promise than you think? When you're depressed, you're in a rut, and you can't see anything good. You need to talk to someone who can help you get out of that rut! Don't wait, ask your parents, or your school counselor for help today.

Medication is often used to treat depression that is severe or disabling. When depression is so bad that you can't focus on anything else, when it interferes with your life in an overwhelming way, medication might be necessary, in addition to counseling. You may only need to take it for a short period, it varies from person to person. Very often, counseling alone is sufficient.

With treatment, most depressed people start to feel better in just a few weeks. So remember, when your problems seem too big and you're feeling low for too long, (more bad days than good) there's help out there and you CAN ask for help.

If you know someone who you think is depressed, YOU CAN HELP. Listen and encourage your friend to ask a parent or a responsible adult about treatment. If you friend doesn't ask for help soon, talk to an adult you trust and respect -- especially if your friend mentions suicide. Your friend's life is more important than keeping a secret.

Treat Depression Naturally! All Natural, Proven, Effective Depression Remedy ­ MindSoothe and MindSoothe Jr. by Native Remedies are 100% natural, effective remedies for adult, teen and child depression.

Why Do People Get Depressed?    Continue >  

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