Giving a Voice to the Silence offers positive angles to the issue that faces those with mental illness. Living with Schizo-Affective Disorder and being able to share my experiences with others, is the best way I know how to pay it forward. Life can be difficult, my goal is to bring a bit of hope to a place where many feel there is none.

Saturday, June 28, 2008

More Than 2 Million Teens Live with Depression

Oil on canvasImage via WikipediaIn the past year, more than 2 million teens have suffered a major bout with depression. The average shows that 8.5% of Tweens and teens between the ages of 12 and 17 mentioned having a major depressive episode; the differences however, show 12.7% of girls and 4.6% of boys. Depression is leading cause of suicide, the third leading cause of death for 15 - 24yo in the US.

Research has shown more than 67,700 Tweens and teens aged 12 to 17 answered questions pertaining to mood and depression, including how the depression affected their lives in reference to family, friends, school and other activities. Those who reports bouts of depression, the most common symptoms included lack of sleep, energy, concentration or self-image.

What has brought this surge in depression among these “kids?” There are many theories, if you ask 100 people you will probably get 100 different answers. My thoughts are this……times have changed. Now that statement makes me feel old, but it’s true. The world has changed and our kids are facing things we may have never dreamed of. Peer pressure is now more than skipping school, it’s drinking, sex, drugs, and violence. It seems that many times they have no conscience, no idea of the repercussions – and if they are caught “it’s wasn’t their fault, (insert a number of reasons)”

Today, many kids are left home alone, live with parents who are addicts, abusive or just never there. In turn, they go to friends or find those who “are like them,” and with no real direction find themselves in situations that instead of bringing fun and excitement, instead results in depression, addiction and the idea that life is hopeless.

Another reality is that kids are doing too much, or are expected to do too much. Just as there are kids who are abused and neglected, there are those who are pushed to be better than everyone else, to live up to parent’s unrealistic expectations, or become a better athlete or scholar than their siblings. These things can bring on depression and the feelings of inadequacy, and the desire to just “get away.”

There is no one reason for the depression and hopelessness our kids feel. Watch TV and they see death and destruction, go to school and they see fights and abuse, go home and it’s much of the same.
Zemanta Pixie


  1. Sometimes I think it's all the reasons above that you listed.

    I think part of the reason is that in the past kids didn't have the time to be depressed (they did in reality, of course). An example is my grandparents. They both met while working in a box factory at the age of twelve. I'm sure that wasn't the happiest place to be, but it was their only means of survival.

    I also think there's a lot to be said for the fact that we've come a long way in the field of mental health. I believe we are better able to detect them in kids these days.

    I also agree with everything you've said as well.

  2. Anxiety and depression are two mental disorders that apart from being confused very often are also two of the commonest mental illnesses. Technically and medically there are a lot of dissimilarities between them though they seem to be similar on the surface. However, the fact that they are often confused to be the same is because they do have certain similarities. As for example the symptoms are very similar. There are certain similarities in the analogy also like both anxiety and depression can be caused by medicines or medications of other diseases or drug interactions. Antidepressants like xanax are prescribed by doctors for both anxiety as well as depression.