Millennials & Melancholy – Inside the heads of young minds
Teens and Trepidations – The cold within the spring
“You are just 18! What are you so sad about? Is it because One Direction broke up or you didn’t find the Forever 21 top in your size? Grow up!”
That’s what most teenagers hear when they reach out to someone about their psychological issues. When it comes to psychology, taking assignment help and enjoying a break might bring some relief, but that isn’t the end-all solution.
Overall, mental illnesses have always been trivialized and chastised. Unless you show signs of physical ailments (like a temperature or nausea or an ache), people consider you all hale and hearty. And when it is an adolescent or a young adult in question, we tend to scoff at the probability even more. But mental health issues are more common in young adults, with every out of every seven teens suffering from anxiety and stress. Yes, mental illnesses go beyond age, and anxiety can take a toll on a teenager too.
Most parents and guardians dismiss mood swings under the pretext of hormonal changes that teens go through. While hormones are one of the reasons behind an irritable teen, the endocrine system may not be the only one at fault. Teen psychology is no less than an enigma, and there are more too mood swings and phases of self-wallowing. As a person journeys from childhood to teenage, there are several things on the way that can impair mental health.
Why is the percentage of teens with mental health shooting up?
Several reasons can trigger mental maladies. Seeing classmates do better in academics, or friends get appreciation and attention in school can be the reason behind a student’s descent into depression. Peer pressure is a key player too. Teens coming from a lower stratum of society may feel depressed for not being at par with their peers socially. Body image issues can also be the culprit here. Teens often try to emulate their lifestyles from the icons they idolize. They tend to fixate on their imperfections more and start lamenting about what they do not have – a prominent collar bone, a sharp jawline, or beautiful skin. Social media is also largely at fault for the rise in the numbers. Social media fuels feelings of reduced self-esteem. With Facebook and Instagram becoming a part of their lives, teens of today evaluate their self-worth with the numbers of “Likes”. The fewer the likes on a post, the more are the chances of a teen wallowing into self-pity.
Another reason behind the upward rising slope in the number of teens diagnosed with mental ailments can be a dysfunctional family. Separated parents, straining relation with a parent, an over-achieving sibling whose shadow a teen may have to live in – all of these can have significant implications on the maturing psyche of a young adult. Pent-up anguish on having to pursue a career against their wish or one’s sexual orientation can lead to mental issues too. Depression and other kinds of mental ailments can run in genetics also.
How do you trace signs of teen depression in a young adult?
Mood swings can change into self-withdrawal tendencies in no time. And before you can trace it, they may retract into a shell. They may keep the blinds down, not letting a sun ray through. They may cancel plans to be home, under a blanket. They may choose to stay in their room for hours when guests come over. They may steer onto the darker side – start substance abuse or exhibit criminal behaviors as a coping mechanism.
These are your cue to realize the turmoil that the teenager is going through. Here are more signs of depression they may show:
- Lowered concentration levels
- Difficulty in making decisions
- Excessive feeling of guilt
- Loss of appetite or binge eating
- Impaired memory
- Preoccupation with death
- Self- harm tendencies
- Sense of hopelessness
- A sudden drop in grades
How can mental health issues be addressed or treated?
Antidepressants like Prozac can help in treating depression. However, research by the FDA has proved that antidepressants can increase suicidal behavior in adolescents with depression and other psychiatric disorders. Moreover, since antidepressants work like tranquilizers and soothe the nerves, patients consuming such medication tend to get addicted to them. This is why the use of antidepressants in younger patients requires close medical monitoring. Also, as a caregiver of a depressed teen, make sure that you keep a close eye so that he or she cannot buy across-the-counter antidepressants.
Since oral medication comes with its set of problems, the best way to treat mental issues is via psychotherapy and counseling. Opening up about what bothers them is a better way to counter the problem than popping medicines at regular intervals. Prescribed doses can suppress the monstrous thoughts for a while, but it is a therapy that can nip the issue in the bud.
Another certified treatment of depression is yoga. Yoga helps to align the mind positively and can work wonders for the body too. Here are some exercises that can help combat psychiatric disorders.
What can you do to alleviate depression in teens?
“Eventually, you will come to understand that love heals everything, and love is all there is.”
This famous line by Gray Zukav, the world-famous spiritual teacher sums it all. Love is the most potent elixir that can set things right with its healing touch. If you are around a young adult suffering from a bout of mental illness, there are several things you can do to help lower the stress level.
To start with, you need to be more compassionate and empathetic with him or her. Even if you cannot alleviate the pain, you can undoubtedly lend an understanding ear and a shoulder to cry on. Most cases of depression and anxiety stem from the feeling of being left out. So do not let your daughter or son, your friend or your sibling feel unloved ever. Try to understand where he or she is coming from before being quick to pass judgment.
Another thing you need to remember is that teens with anxiety issues tend to take everything a tad too seriously. So, think twice before you crack a joke. And while being there for them and supporting them should be your first step, do not be too invasive. Give them room to breathe. But remind them constantly that you are there for them so that they can come back to you when they need a confidante.
As a parent or a custodian, the biggest mistake that you could be doing is trying to school your teen with harshness. You need to remember that shame and punishment can make an adolescent feel even more worthless. Encourage your child to make mistakes. Let them learn from their mistakes. Most importantly, do not force a young adult to follow a path that he or she doesn’t want to. If it takes a toll on their psychology, advice assignment help so that they can save their grades and enjoy a break at the same time.
As a parent or an elder sibling or a friend or a custodian, you must know how to trace early signs of depression and anxiety in a young adult. The next time you see an adolescent alienating himself/herself, do not let it go. Dig a little deeper and keep checking on him or her. Talk to the teen and let him/her know that you are here to help. Every time the person falters, assure him or her that it’s okay.
Go and be their Messiah and the light at the end of their tunnel. Believe me; there is no greater happiness than seeing someone get out of the claws of darkness and heal.