Teens, Depression and Substance Abuse


Teens, Depression and Substance Abuse

Adolescent Depression and Dependency

I was fortunate enough to receive a comment from Celina about an article they posted on their blog titled 8 most common college diseases. If you've never gone to college or if it's been a life-time ago we just don't realize how stressful and exhausting this can be.


This blog is very informative and well worth passing on, thank you Celina!


Adolescent Depression happens during the teen years and can become extremely serious if not treated. When a teenager is suffering from adolescent depression they go through continued sadness, feelings of loneliness, their self-esteem diminishes and they lose all interest in the activities and enjoyment they once loved. Depression affects their sleeping, eating, school performance and relationships with family and friends.


Depression affects the ways you think, feel, eat, sleep, talk and work. There isn't a part of your body that isn't affected; your mind, body, and spirit become weakened when you suffer from depression. Adolescent depression isn't a situation that you can snap yourself out of either. This is an illness that needs medical attention and sometimes counseling or therapy.


You don't want to see anyone suffer with depression no matter how old they are but it's crushing to see a young person depressed and sad. There are many reasons depression can develop during the teenage years. Stress can cause depression at any age and teenagers can go through their fair share just maturing and growing up. Hormones can also play a huge role in depression for some teenagers. Problems at home can cause depression also, at this age teenagers are struggling to be independent while parents are protecting their teens. There are many reasons conflict in the home between teens and their parents or teens and their siblings can cause depression.


Some of the other reasons teens may become depressed are due to; death in the family, death of a friend, relationship with a girlfriend or boyfriend breaks up, harassment in school, illness, learning disabilities or child abuse.


When young people suffer from depression their outlook on life changes and they may become gloomy, and negative and very hard to get along with. Unfortunately many teens struggling with depression choose to experiment with marijuana, alcohol or other substances to make them-self feel better. In a short period of time this can go from experimenting to abusing very quickly and before you know it they're hooked on a substance they now need treatment for.


Most parents know their children well enough to know when something is wrong or not quite right with them. But with teens sometimes it's not always easy knowing for sure if it's depression or not. It's important to catch depression in the early stages if possible because the deeper it gets the harder it is to get under control.


There are physical and emotional signs to look for in your teen that is associated with depression, these include

  1. Headaches
  2. Aches and pains, just not feeling their normal self
  3. They may become agitated, flustered and restless
  4. Their eating habits change, most of the time they lose their appetite but some begin to eat more
  5. They can't seem to concentrate on school, homework, TV and other normal things
  6. Decision making becomes frustrating and hard
  7. Forgetfulness
  8. They show signs of being much more tired and fatigued
  9. They feel of sad, unhappy, hopeless, worthless, or they show signs of self-hatred
  10. They lose interest in the things that made them happy and excited in the past
  11. Thinking or talking about suicide or even death
  12. They appear tired all the time and either have trouble sleeping or they are sleeping way too much
  13. Alienate themselves from family and friends


If your child is struggling in school, showing some of the signs above and just not quite acting like their ole-self, never be too quick to pass it off as 'rotten teenage years'. Many times it goes much deeper than that and they're just feeling downright miserable and need help. The use of alcohol and drugs today by teens and young people grows in numbers daily. There are many young people today that experiment with alcohol because they are depressed not realizing it's making it worse in the long run. Many depressed teens go from marijuana to alcohol and then to harder substances down the road and sometimes depression was part of the reason.


Depression isn't something that goes away by itself overnight and if gone undiagnosed and untreated can lead to alcohol abuse, substance abuse, chronic depression, suicide or death.



Website used
Medline Plus
University of Maryland Medical Center

Post Discussion

  1. Addict

    Interesting and can't wait to comment more.

  2. Addict

    A depressed teen may self-medicate with alcohol to escape the terrible sense of hopelessness. People use alcohol for numerous reasons. Anyway, Thanks for sharing this post.

  3. Addict

    Teenagers face a number of pressures, changes of puberty to questions about who and where they are found in some depressed teens, symptoms of irritability, aggression and anger are more important.

  4. Addict

    it's good topic really i discussed some notes about it at my blog.

  5. Addict

    Nice post.....

    Psychologists today use many different approaches to treating depression. For the more severe cases, the most typical outpatient technique is to blend antidepressant medication with psychotherapy. All of these drugs have minor unpleasant side effects, but those for whom the medications bring relief from depression are usually glad to tolerate them. Psychotherapy should always accompany pharmacological treatment. As the antidepressant improves the underlying moods, the reasons for the despondency must be explored, maladaptive patterns examined, and efforts to make necessary changes supported.

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