Many families and the teens themselves look for other explanations or causes. This may lead teens to believe that this is just the way it is and that they must suffer through it.”
Prevention can be difficult, even knowing ahead of time through these study results that some people can develop depression in adolescence.
“If we have a predisposition to depression from our family, it is difficult to prevent it,” Coffey said. “What can be done though, is to teach teens ahead of time how to recognize the signs and symptoms of depression, and what to do when they do experience them.”
“On the other side, it would be wonderful it this was taught to kids throughout their school lives,” he added. “If we taught children how to handle anger, stress, sadness, hurt and other emotions starting when they were in kindergarten, children would likely develop a better mental health outlook. Depressed teens would be more likely to seek treatments such as medications or counseling and this would thereby reduce some symptoms.”
Luckily there are many treatment options available, including the therapies mentioned in the study press release.
“The most serious option is inpatient hospitalization down to regular one-on-one sessions with a counselor or social worker,” Coffey said. “There are many outpatient options, such as partial hospitalization, intensive outpatient programs, individual and family therapy, as well as community support groups.”
Reiss added that treatment for depression in the teen years needs to be approached differently in some cases.
“It must be realized that depression in teenage years presents differently than in adult years (symptoms, reactions and behaviors are different); and teenagers respond to psychotropic medications differ from adult reactions (at times with increased tendency toward negative side-effects, including suicidal ideation),” Reiss said.”
Also, treatment should be comprehensive and look into deeper issues that the teen is having.