As kids move through their challenging teen years, many experience an increase in feelings of unease. For many, this morose feeling will be temporary and subside by itself. But for others, this upset is long-lasting and may even spiral into depression. If you think that your teen is sinking into depression, there may be a solution. With some at home efforts, and perhaps professional medical intervention, you can help your teen beat the depression-related blues.
Talk to your teen regularly. Teens may fall into depression because they feel that have no one to turn to, reports KidsHealth. If your family life is not as rosy as you would like, or your teen has recently had to deal with the loss of a family member of a divorce, she may be even more prone to depression. Ensure that your teen knows that she can come to you with anything, particularly in trying times, by keeping the channels of communication open. Ask your teen about her day and her to be open with you and tell you of issues with which she is struggling.
Praise your teen often. Teens are often hard on themselves. Remind your teen regularly that he is special and that you value him. Never assume that your teen knows how much you care, but instead make this care obvious.
Monitor your child’s relationships. Some teens become depressed as a result of the strife that is characteristic of teen relationships. Keep your eye on his peer relationships. For example, if you notice your teen yelling to someone on the phone, don’t turn a deaf ear, but instead listen a bit more closely and try to discern what the problem may be, discussing the issue with your teen later.
Enroll your teen in a class or club. As your teen joins with others she may develop a more positive self image.
Tackle any signs of depression as soon as you see them. Many parents initially discount signs of teen depression, telling themselves that they are merely seeing the angst that is common among teens. If you think that your teen is depressed, speak to your teen or seek professional assistance.
Use technological tools. Catch-It is a free Internet program that is intended to educate your teen on the signs and symptoms of depression.