The National Parenting Center

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Signs of Teenage Depression





Is your teenager depressed? The symptoms may be harder to spot than obvious blues. The following are some of the signs of teenage depression, and are most significant when they occur in combination and over a period lasting more than two weeks.

• First, sadness, anxiety and hopelessness.

• Second, lack of interest in food or compulsive overeating with resulting weight loss or gain. Or, night time insomnia and daytime sleeping.

• Third, social isolation. Friends are important to teens and if your child is withdrawing from friends, this is a sign of trouble.

• Fourth, sudden drop in grades, cutting school, or relentless rebellion.

• Fifth, psychosomatic complaints – headaches, stomachaches, low back pain and fatigue. These can plague depressed teens.

• Alcohol, drug use or sexual activity can be ways of coping with depression.

• Finally, suicidal feeling and behavior are a sign of serious depression and a real cry for help.


An expert in the field of adolescent behavior, Ms. McCoy has authored eleven books on the subject including the best selling “The Teenage Body Book”. Additionally she has written hundreds of articles for major national magazines. Coordinator of the Clinical Ph.D. Program at California School of Professional Psychology and Staff Counselor at the Center for Individual and Family Counseling in North Hollywood, California.

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