In modern society, teenage depression is on the rise and often leads to various adolescent issues such as teenage runaways, alcoholism, drug addiction, pregnancy, eating disorders, and suicide. Depression is commonly the root cause behind all of these crises. The transition into adolescence is tough and the choices made by teenagers can have lasting impacts on the entire younger generation.
It is increasingly acknowledged that teenage depression can have a significant impact, potentially even endangering lives. Depression can be defined in different ways, but its main feature is being a serious mental illness characterized by long-lasting feelings of sadness, isolation, and other negative emotions. Several factors make adolescents vulnerable to depression. The teenage years are perplexing as teenagers undergo physical changes and navigate changing relationships.
According to an article titled “Assessment and Treatment of Adolescent Depression and Suicidality” published in the Journal of Mental Health Counseling, adolescents face the challenge of balancing their desire for independence with the need for support and guidance from their families. However, today’s youth confront additional difficulties as they grow up in a world that differs significantly from their parents’ experiences. The article highlights that unlike previous generations, teenagers nowadays encounter unprecedented stressors and often resort to self-destructive behaviors to cope. Shockingly, suicide rates among 15-19 year olds increased by 11% between 1980 and 1997, while those aged 10-14 witnessed an alarming 109% increase. The primary cause of suicidal thoughts is identified as depression.
Teenage depression can be triggered by certain types of significant loss, including death, divorce, separation, or the loss of a family member, important friend, or romantic partner.