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How to Support Your Teenager Struggling with Depression

Mental health is an incredibly important, yet sometimes overlooked, component of overall health and wellbeing. As a parent or guardian, you want your teen to be as healthy and happy as possible. But when your child is struggling with depression, it can be difficult to know how to help.

Teenagers are particularly vulnerable to depression, as the many transitions they face throughout adolescence can be challenging and difficult to cope with. Around one in five teens struggle with depressive symptoms, often resulting in difficulties with academic performance, social relationships, and other aspects of life. Feeling sad or low moods are normal reactions when facing unexpected change or loss, but teen depression is more than a passing sadness; it persists for weeks or months and can be much harder to grapple with alone. The best thing teenagers can do if they sense they may be developing depression is to reach out for help from a trusted adult. There are also a range of treatments available that can help adolescents manage their emotional health more effectively and regain control of their lives.

Here’s a breakdown of how you can provide the best care for your teenager dealing with depression:

Understand the Signs and Symptoms of Depression

The first step in providing support for your teen is understanding the signs and symptoms of depression. It’s important to recognize that depression looks different in everyone, so keep an eye out for any unusual changes in your teenager’s behavior or outlook on life.

Some common signs may include feelings of worthlessness or guilt, lack of motivation, mood swings, drastic change in sleeping habits, or withdrawal from family and friends. If you notice any of these signs in your teen, it’s important to reach out for help right away.

Create an Open Dialogue with Your Teen About Depression

When it comes to sensitive topics like mental health, communication is key.

Encourage your child to share their thoughts and feelings without judgement from you or anyone else in the family. Let them know that it’s okay for them to express their emotions—even if those emotions are difficult or uncomfortable—and that you are there for them no matter what they tell you. This open dialogue will enable them to feel more supported during this challenging time.

Depression is a serious mental health problem impacting adolescents. Teenagers typically experience depression in unique ways, with symptoms and effects that can be different from adults. Common signs of teen depression include changes in sleep and eating habits, changes in behavior, negative or irrational thoughts and feelings of hopelessness or worthlessness. It is important for teens to seek help if they are experiencing persistent sad or anxious feelings as depression can have a long-term negative impact on their overall wellbeing and future successes. Through effective therapy, medication and self-care strategies, teen depression can be managed effectively.

Seek Professional Help for Your Teen

Reaching out for professional help can be one of the most beneficial ways to support your child dealing with depression. A therapist can provide guidance on coping mechanisms and lifestyle changes that may be beneficial while also helping your teen learn how to better manage their emotions and regulate their thoughts more effectively. Additionally, therapy provides a safe space where teens can talk openly about their feelings without fear of judgement or criticism from family members or peers alike.

Depression can take a toll on both physical and mental health if not addressed properly by qualified professionals. Being able to recognize the signs and symptoms of depression early on is essential in providing the best care for someone suffering from this condition—especially teens who are just beginning to navigate through life as adults-in-training! By creating an open dialogue between parents/guardians and teens while also seeking professional help when needed, we can work together towards creating a healthier future for our children!

If you need additional support, or if you think your teen might be depressed, the best thing to do is to reach out to a mental health professional. Our team at Mindsight Behavioral Group can help you find the best path forward. Call our office at 606-401-2966 or request an appointment online at

Emily Hammons, marketing director and tea latte aficionado, loves words and writing. When she's not blogging, you can find her perfecting her island on Animal Crossing: New Horizons, or curled up with a mystery novel.

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