Some teens would rather wallow in silence than openly show they are emotionally broken by something. If you notice any unusual behaviour in a teen, act fast because they could be suffering from depression or other emotional disorders.
Depression is a state of low mood and aversion to activity that can affect a person’s thoughts, behaviour, feelings and sense of well-being, according to Wikipedia.
In an interview with Women Today, Sylvia Rugina, a mother of two and a journalist working with National Media Group Rwanda said that parents need to understand their teenagers.
“When a parent does not understand their teenager, things are likely to go astray. When a teenager has a problem, they sulk and become distant, at times sleeping early or even later than unusual. As a parent, you may brush it off thinking it’s just a phase yet actually the teenager has a problem,” Rugina reveals. She further said that in the due process, depression may occur because the teenager is scared to talk to the parents.
“If you are close to a teenager and free with them, they will openly talk about what is bothering them. We ought to be close to our children at all times especially if they are depressed. If my child has a problem, I always get to the root of the problem and if possible seek an expert’s help,” Rugina expressed.
Chaste Uwihoreye, a psychologist, said that treatment given to a teenager or adult when they are depressed depends on the level of depression.
“If the level of depression is high and they don’t communicate, the patient is given medication commonly known as anti- depression because at this stage, psycho therapy will not help.
But when the person can still communicate, it’s important for a parent to facilitate and help the teen interact with peers or even take them to football games so that they don’t feel lonely,” Uwihoreye explained.
He said, “But with depression, the parent’s first move should be seeking an expert’s help like a counselor or psychologist.”
According to an article ‘Depressed Children and Teenagers’ written by Dr. Douglas Riley, parents of depressed children are usually desperate to help them get better. Dr. Douglas Riley further says that there are three sources of depression that we have to look at closely.
Some teenagers are depressed simply because of biological reasons. A major issue is external stress like bullying at school, rejection from peers and struggling academically. Internal causes are poor self-concept, or perfectionism, or believing that life is not worth living if your boyfriend/girlfriend breaks up with you.