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GabrielleCruz

MartiSchwartz
ELA10D
March17,2016

Depression
AccordingtotheUniversityofMichiganDepressionCenter,21%ofwomenand12%of
menwillexperienceanepisodeofdepressionatsomepointintheirlifetime.Depressionis
muchmorethanjustsimplyfeelingdownorupsetitisamooddisorder.Itsamentalhealth
disorderthatisplaguingthenation,theworld.
Problem:
Depressiondoesnotchooseitsvictimsonsocialstatus,economicstatus,orgender
anyonecanbecomeavictimofdepression.JaneBrody,oftheNYTimes,statesthatdepression
affectsasmanyas1in5adolescentsbytheage18.Accordingtoastudyin2014bythe
NationalInstituteofMentalHealth,17.3%ofteenswhohadamajordepressiveepisodewere
femaleand5.7%weremale.Thatsamestudyshowspercentagesbyageandrace/ethnicity.
AccordingtothegraphontheNIMHwebsite,thepercentageofdepressedteenswashigherthe
closertheteensagewasto18.Also,thehighestpercentagegroupforethnicitieswerewhite
adolescentswith12%whileothergroupslikeHispanics(11.5%)andblacks(9.1%)hadalower
percentage.
Thereismorethanonespecificreasonastowhyteensaresubjecttodeveloping
depression.JaneE.Brody,authorofPERSONALHEALTHAdolescentsAngstoradeeper
Disorder?TipsforSpottingSymptoms,saysthatthedivorceofparents,geneticinheritance,

beingvictimorwitnesstosexualorphysicalabuseandfailingtoachievegoalsareallreasons
whyteensdevelopdepression.AccordingtotheTeenHelpwebsite,between20to50percent
ofteenswhosufferfromdepressionhaveafamilymemberwithdepressionorothermental
disorders.Thereisnospecificreasonwhyteensdevelopdepression,whicheasilyexplainshow
itsknownasbeingthemostcommonmentalhealthdisorderamongteensandadultsinAmerica.
Theeffectsofdepressiononteenagersmayvaryfromsimplemoodinesstosuicide.
Someoftheoutcomesofthismentalillnessinclude:problemsinschool,drugandalcoholabuse,
recklessbehavior,changesinsleepandeatingpatternsandlastly,suicide.TheTeenHelp
websitestatedthatthenumberoneleadingcauseofsuicideisuntreateddepression,but
surprisingly,lessthan33%ofdepressedadolescentsgetthehelptheyneed.Inthearticle
DepressioninTeensfromMentalHealthAmerica,eachyear,almost5,000youngpeople,
ages1524,killthemselves.Suicideisthethirdleadingcauseofdeathinadolescentswith
propertreatment,itcanbeprevented.
Solution
:
Thereareanumberofsymptomsandsignsinteenswithdepression.Someofthesesigns
includelackofenthusiasm,energy,concentrationormotivation,overreactiontocriticism,
withdrawalfromfriendsandactivities,andpoorperformanceinschool.Thefirststeptohelping
anadolescentwithdepressionwouldbetorecognizethesymptomsandacknowledgethatthey
aredepressed.Aftertheacknowledgement,itisimportanttooffersupportbylisteningand
understanding.Mostimportantly,thedepressionshouldbereportedtoaprofessionaltobe
properlytreated.Someofthemostcommonandeffectivetreatmentsfordepressioninteensare
psychotherapy,cognitivebehavioraltherapy,interpersonalbehavior,andmedication.Becauseof

someoftheeffectsandsymptoms,doctorsshouldusecautionwhenprescribingantidepressants
toteens.
MySolution:
Asateenager,Icanpayattentiontothebehaviorsofotherstudents/peersaroundmeand
offermysupportandtimetothem(ifIfeelasthoughtheyfitthecriteriaofanadolescentwith
depression).Onalargerscale,Icouldcreateasupportgroupforothersbetweentheages1520.
SinceBlackstoneiscomposedofstudentsfromthreedifferentcities(CentralFalls,Pawtucket
andProvidence),Iwouldopenthesupportgrouptoteensfromschoolsineachofthosecities
districts.Thegroupwouldalsobeopentoparentsorteacherstohelpmakethemawareandteach
themaboutdepression.Bymakingothersawareandgivingsupporttoteenswhoneedthehelp,
thesupportgroupcouldcontributetothedecreaseinnumbersofdepressedteens.

WorksCited:
Brody,JaneE.,PERSONALHEALTHAdolescentAngstoraDeeperDisorder?Tipsfor
spotting
serioussymptoms,TheNewYorkTimes,WEB,03/03/16.
DepressionUniversityofMichiganDepressionCenter,WEB,03/03/16
DepressioninTeensMentalHealthAmerica(MHA)n.d.WEB,02/29/16.
MajorDepressionAmongAdolescentsNationalInstituteofMentalHealth,WEB,03/06/16
Singh,Maanvi,LessSleep,MoreTimeOnlineRaiseRiskforTeenDepression
,
YourHealth
NPR,
02/06/14.
Smith,MelindaandJeanneSegal,ParentsGuidetoTeenDepressionHelpGuide,Feb.2016
WEB,
02/29/16
TeenDepressionStatistics&FactsTeenHelp,WEB,03/06/16.