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Teenage Health Issues: Teenage Depression Essay

2068 words - 8 pages

You may think adolescents are little adults, in fact they are adolescents. These adolescents live somewhere between childhood and adulthood with specific needs, however different from the needs of children and adults. They often may look like adults but their behavior on the other hand is childlike. Some of these adolescents grow up normally but some suffer impaired or disordered development. Usually an adolescent that doesn't grow up normally tends to develop the depressive disorder. These adolescents tend to stay away from friends and join abnormal peer groups. They become irritable and moody, often bored, and may neglect their appearance. In worst cases adolescents feel down on themselves when they are depressed while at the same time tend to develop eating disorders and start using street drugs and alcohol to feel better about themselves temporarily.Teenage depression is a very serious disease that affects mood, thoughts and behavior. Depressive disorder tends to develop slowly in younger children, but it is more likely to be present in adolescents. An estimation of 5% of all adolescents will suffer from depression and unfortunately only 20% of depressed teens are properly diagnosed and treated. When diagnosing this disorder, symptoms can be missed if you don't know what to look for. Usually teachers and parents think that an adolescent is unhappy or moody because it's a natural part of being young, however consistent unhappiness or moodiness is not normal for any human being.Depression is a medical illness, which is caused by a chemical imbalance in the brain. Neurons send messages from one nerve ending to another across synapses in the brain. Serotonin a neurotransmitter is a chemical that helps transfer information. (Heavy drug abuse wears off serotonin; this is the reason why teen drug users suffer from depression) Changes in a person's feelings, thoughts, and behavior in depression is when these neurons do not function normally. Medication such as antidepressants works to restore proper chemical balance in the brain.Major depression (unipolar disorder) and manic-depressive disorder (dipolar disorder) are two primary types of depressive disorders. Here are some symptoms that can be found in adolescents, which have major depression: loss of interest in usual activities, rapid weight loss or weight gain, poor concentration, sleeping to much or to little, feeling helpless and hopeless and the more serious would be thoughts of death or suicide. Children as young as five and six years old have made attempts to kill themselves and some are successful. Symptoms of manic-depressive disorder would be: significant mood swings, fast talking and racing thoughts, to much energy, inability to sleep, easy distractibility, and risk taking behavior. Along with these symptoms there are many risk factors for depression. Teens under stress or who have attention, learning, or conduct, disorders are at a higher risk for depression. Usually if there is a family...

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