Helping Your Teen Through Depression

With the demands and expectation of getting good grades in school and maintaining a social life, teens may start to feel overwhelmed. Depression can result from untreated and chronic feelings of overwhelm, confusion and/or hopelessness. it is crucial to understand a teen’s depression and to have a set of concrete action steps.

Here are 3 Tips for Helping your Teen through Depression...

  1. Schedule an appointment to see a Therapist.  Discuss with your child the option of seeing a therapist. There is no shame in seeking professional help.  Let your teen know you will be supportive during his or her process, however you will also agree to give space for the therapeutic relations to develop.  In addition, family therapy may be helpful in bringing the family unit together to address issues and create usable strategies.
  2. Create a wellness log to track daily activities.  You can create a schedule or log to track healthy eating and sleeping habits, physical and social activities and mood. If your teen is feeling down, encourage him or her to practice healthy habits and stay connected with enjoyable activities. Keep options open for exercise that your child and/or the whole family can do.
  3. Be patient when not in crisis.  Being non-judgmental, supportive and loving will help your teen to know that you care. Offer words of support that will reinforce positive behavior and create a sense of teamwork., Stay engaged and listen closely to your child’s verbal and non-verbal cues. Remember to create a safe space for your teen to express thoughts and feelings..

As a parent, it’s important to stay engaged through the process of helping your child through any mental health challenge. As your child begins to feel better, remember to celebrate, recognize and affirm.