Everyone has bad days but when bad days turn into bad weeks it is time to see a doctor. Adolescent depression is described as "a disorder occurring during the teenage years marked by persistent sadness, discouragement, loss of self worth, and loss of interest in usual activities" (MEDLINE plus Medical Encyclopedia). Depression in adolescents has often been overlooked since teenagers are considered moody and withdrawn, yet one out of every ten teenagers are diagnosed every day (Hyde and Forsyth, 2002). Also, according to the National Institute of Mental Health, "health care professionals are reluctant to prematurely "label" a young person with a mental illness diagnosis"(author). Depression has been a problem since the beginning of time. There are many different types of depression, but the cause, symptoms, and treatment are all similar.
The history of depression can be traced back to the prehistoric time. The Hebrews thought that it was a punishment for sins and if one repented the priests could cure it (Hyde and Forsyth, 2002). Hypocrites, of fourth century B.C., said that the "humors"(blood, phlegm, black and yellow bile) were unbalanced. Claudius Galen, a Roman physician of second century A.D., wrote on Melancholia. This helped improve theories of depression was the result of demons. Around the 1790's Benjamin Rush started introducing the thought that people with depression were sick and needed medical treatment not abuse. Sigmund Freud helped the public understand that depression "comes from anger turned against oneself." Now, in the twenty-first century, doctors know that depression comes from a chemical imbalance in the brain (Hyde and Forsyth, 2002)
Depression is a disease that afflicts the human psyche in such a way that the afflicted tend to act and react abnormally toward others and themselves. Adolescent depression is greatly under diagnosed, and leads to serious difficulties in school, and personal adjustment. The reason why depression is often overlooked in children is because children are not always able to express how they feel. Therefore, teachers should be trained in dealing with depressed youths, and to advise the parents of the child to seek professional treatment. School is the place where children spend most of their waking hours learning, socializing, and growing. A child needs to be mentally healthy in order to learn properly, and sometimes problems arise at home, with friends, or with themselves. These problems need to be noticed, and talked about. Teachers have to pay attention to adolescents' behavioral patterns, and work with the child on a one to one basis. The children can then open up and talk freely with the teacher about anything that is on their mind. Learning disabilities or conduct disorder can put a child in greater risk of depression. Therefore, treating one problem and ignoring the other will not help the child...