A Note From The Santa Monica Teen & Family Therapist
Teen depression seems to be on the rise, affecting one out of every 20 teenagers. What is the cause … and what is the solution? – Sandra
During the teenage years, the pressure to conform with their peers can be incredibly strong. If kids feel different, inadequate or deprived in some way, then feelings of self-loathing and depression may be the result. With Facebook, Snapchat and Instagram so prevalent, teens are being bombarded with images that they feel they need to live up to.
There are also increasing concerns about competition for college, and the endless hours that are going into creating the perfect resume with extracurricular activities and advanced coursework. Today’s adolescents are exhausted, overwhelmed and breaking down.
It is important for parents to make a distinction between situational depression: which is a normal reaction to stress or loss, and clinical depression: believed to be caused by brain chemistry and not related to external situations. Regardless of the cause, it can be beneficial for teens to receive support going through these periods from a trained professional.
“The idea that one must be, and look, endlessly cheerful is a destructive and daunting expectation for teens.” says Dr. Andrew Weil, who feels that kids need to learn that happiness is not some end point to be achieved. I teach teens how to discover a sense of peace and contentment through life’s ups and downs, see and accept life as is, and find ways to respond effectively to each situation.
If your teen or young adult child is struggling socially or emotionally, I can help you to discover the cause and remedy it.
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