Teenage Health Issues: Teenage depression

Essay by guysonguyHigh School, 12th gradeB+, June 2007

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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,