DefinitionBy Mayo Clinic staff
Teen depression is a serious medical problem that causes a persistent feeling of sadness and loss of interest in activities. It affects how your teen thinks, feels and behaves, and it can cause emotional, functional and physical problems. Although mood disorders, such as depression, can occur at any time in life, symptoms may be different between teens and adults.
Issues such as peer pressure, academic expectations and changing bodies can bring a lot of ups and downs for teens. But for some teens, the lows are more than just temporary feelings — they're a symptom of depression.
Teen depression isn't a weakness or something that can be overcome with willpower — it can have serious consequences and requires long-term treatment. For most teens, depression symptoms ease with treatment such as medication and psychological counseling.
- Depressive disorders. In: Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders DSM-IV-TR. 4th ed. Arlington, Va.: American Psychiatric Association; 2000. http://www.psychiatryonline.com. Accessed Sept. 13, 2012.
- Adjustment disorders. In: Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders DSM-IV-TR. 4th ed. Arlington, Va.: American Psychiatric Association; 2000. http://www.psychiatryonline.com. Accessed Sept. 13, 2012.
- Depression. National Institute of Mental Health. http://www.nimh.nih.gov/health/publications/depression/index.shtml. Accessed Sept. 14, 2012.
- A family guide: What families need to know about adolescent depression. http://www.nami.org/Template.cfm?Section=Child_and_Adolescent_Action_Center&template=/ContentManagement/ContentDisplay.cfm&ContentID=24806. Accessed Sept. 14, 2012.
- FAQs on child and adolescent depression. American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry. http://www.aacap.org/cs/child_and_adolescent_depression_resource_center/faqs_on_child_and_adolescent_depression#What%20causes%20depression%20in%20children?. Accessed Sept. 14, 2012.
- Overview of treatment for adolescent depression. http://www.uptodate.com/index. Accessed Sept. 14, 2012.
- Depression in adolescents: Epidemiology, clinical manifestations, and diagnosis. http://www.uptodate.com/index. Accessed Sept. 14, 2012.
- McCaffrey R, et al. Garden walking and art therapy for depression in older adults: A pilot study. Research in Gerontological Nursing. 2011;4:237.
- McDowell AK, et al. Practical suicide-risk management for the busy primary care physician. Mayo Clinic Proceedings. 2011;8:792.
- Understanding major depression. National Alliance on Mental Health. http://www.nami.org/Template.cfm?section=Search&Template=Search/SearchDisplay.cfm. Accessed June 20, 2012.
- Schreiber J, et al. Suicidal ideation and behavior in adults. http://www.uptodate.com/index. Accessed Sept. 14, 2012.
- Carpenter DJ. St. John's wort and S-adenosyl amethione as "natural" alternatives to conventional antidepressants in the era of the suicidality boxed warning: What is the evidence for clinically relevant benefit? Alternative Medicine Review. 2011;16:17.
- Understanding suicide: Fact sheet 2012. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. http://www.cdc.gov/ViolencePrevention/pub/Suicide_factsheet.html. Accessed Sept. 14, 2012.
- When you fear someone may take their life. American Foundation for Suicide Prevention. http://www.afsp.org/index.cfm?page_id=f2f25092-7e90-9bd4-c4658f1d2b5d19a0. Accessed Sept. 14, 2012.
- Cizza G, et al. Clinical subtypes of depression are associated with specific metabolic parameters and circadian endocrine profiles in women: The power study. Plos One. 2012;7:e28912. http://www.plosone.org/article/info%3Adoi%2F10.1371%2Fjournal.pone.0028912. Accessed June 19, 2012.
- Pae C, et al. Atypical depression: A comprehensive review. CNS Drugs. 2009;2:1023.
- McPhee SJ, et al. Current Medical Diagnosis & Treatment. 51st ed. New York, N.Y.: The McGraw-Hill Companies; 2012. http://www.accessmedicine.com/content.aspx?aID=13381. Accessed June 20, 2012.
- Parker G, et al. Will a new genotyping test help the clinician predict response to antidepressant drugs? Australasian Psychiatry. 2010;18:413.
- Hourani LL, et al. Influence of spirituality on depression, posttraumatic stress disorder, and suicidality in active duty military personnel. Depression Research and Treatment. 2012;2012:e1. http://www.hindawi.com/journals/drt/2012/425463/. Accessed Aug. 28, 2012.
- Depression and complementary health practices: What the science says. National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine. Dec. 2011. http://nccam.nih.gov/health/providers/digest/depression-science.htm. Accessed May 10, 2012.
- Croarkin PE (expert opinion). Mayo Clinic, Rochester, Minn. Oct. 3, 2012.
- Olsen MW (expert opinion). Mayo Clinic, Rochester, Minn. Oct. 6, 2012.
- Hall-Flavin DK (expert opinion). Mayo Clinic, Rochester, Minn. Oct. 8, 2012.
- Marchand WR. Mindfulness-based stress reduction, mindfulness-based cognitive therapy, and Zen meditation for depression. Journal of Psychiatric Practice. 2012;18:233.
- Tanyi RA, et al. The effects of psychoneuroimmunology (PNI) based lifestyle intervention in modifying the progression of depression in clinically depressed adults. International Journal of Psychiatry in Medicine. 2011;42:151.
- Wu J, et al. Acupuncture for depression: A review of clinical applications. The Canadian Journal of Psychiatry. 2012;57:397.
- Chi J, et al. Tai chi and reduction of depressive symptoms for older adults: A meta-analysis of randomized trials. Geriatrics & Gerontology International. In press. Accessed Aug. 28, 2012.
- Chan MF, et al. The effectiveness of music listening in reducing depressive symptoms in adults: A systemic review. Complementary Therapies in Medicine. 2011;19:332.
- Hoecker JL (expert opinion). Mayo Clinic, Rochester, Minn. Sept. 24, 2012.