Teen depression and anxiety are often viewed as the same thing- and they do overlap in some areas. Furthermore, they are emotional responses to circumstances or experiences in a teen’s life; however, the symptoms and causes of teen depression and anxiety differ. Treatment for each condition may also differ depending on the individual. For instance, a therapist may teach a teenager a set of skills for lifting them out of a depressed mental state. By contrast, they may use a different strategy for teaching a teenager how to stay calm in certain situations. Let’s take a closer look at teen depression and anxiety to see the differences.
What is Depression?
Depression occurs when your teenager feels like they are in a constant state of sadness or gloominess. Depression can cause an adolescent to lose motivation and become withdrawn. They may come home from school and go straight to their bedroom and stay there for hours. They may also feel tired all of the time and want to sleep. Common signs of depression include:
- Apathy – loss of interest in things they otherwise enjoy
- Difficulty concentrating or staying focused on anything
- Excessive guilt even when there is no reason to feel guilty
- Abrupt changes in different areas of life (friends, interests)
- Compulsive behaviors such as overeating or substance abuse
- Preoccupation with death or dying
You may also notice that your child is doing poorly in school if their grades suddenly drop. They may also have no interest in going out with friends or doing much outside of the home.
What is Anxiety?
Whereas depression may cause apathy or withdrawal, anxiety disorder causes excessive feelings of fear, dread, or worry. A teenager may feel tense or always alert. While several external factors may stir anxiety, sometimes a teen may feel anxious for no reason. Common signs of anxiety include:
- Extreme, and sometimes sudden, emotional changes
- Uncontrollable panic attacks
- A fear or phobia of people, places, objects, or events
- Avoiding social interaction or extracurricular activities
- Headaches, rapid heartbeat, excessive fatigue, changes in eating habits
- Difficulty falling asleep due to uncontrollable worry
Teens who suffer from anxiety may perform poorly in school. You may notice that their habits or behaviors have changed to cope with their disorder.
How Are Teen Depression and Anxiety Similar?
One similarity of teen depression and anxiety is that both can cause a teen to think suicidal thoughts. If so, you should seek help for your teenage son or daughter immediately at a center that offers teen depression and anxiety treatment. Another similarity in both conditions is the need to self-medicate. They may turn to drugs or alcohol as a means of coping with their mental condition. A treatment center in California can help a teenager address both their mental disorder and their addiction.
Get Help for Your Teen Today
If you see signs of teen depression and anxiety in your child, then you can get help. Destinations for Teens offer professional care for all types of mental disorders and addictions and offers teen depression and anxiety treatment. To find out more, call us at 877.466.0620 and speak with a treatment specialist. We are here to help your teen get on the road to recovery.