Can Teenage Depression Affect Families?

a mother consoles her daughter as her depression affects the whole family

Depression can be hard on everyone in a person’s life. While occasional depressed moods and even seasonal depression are a relatively normal part of life, teenage depression is on the rise. Pressures at school, fear of failure, social isolation, and worrying about the future can lead many teens to depression. Unfortunately, many teens struggle with depression and have no idea or don’t know how to ask for help. A family therapy program is the safest, most effective way for parents to help teens struggling with depression.

If your teen seems depressed or you want more information on teenage depression, contact Imagine Seattle today. Our programs help adolescents ages twelve to seventeen and their family members reconnect and build healthier relationships. Call us now at 888.346.0473 or fill out our online form to learn how our family therapy program can help you manage teenage depression at home.

What Is Depression?

Depression is a mood disorder characterized by a depressed mood. Sadness, lethargy, and lack of motivation are common symptoms of teenage depression. For most teens, it can be hard to know if they’re suffering from depression or daily hormone changes and stress. Depression often leads teens to feel hopeless and distant. This can lead to the following:

  • Self-isolation
  • Self-harm
  • Drug or alcohol use

If your teen is withdrawn, exhibiting changes in social behavior, or is no longer interested in things they used to love, they may be struggling with depression. Depressive episodes come and go. They can be triggered by various life events, seasonal changes, or compounded stress.

Signs and symptoms of depression include:

  • Chronic sadness and excessive crying
  • Loss of interest
  • Changes in sleep habits
  • Changes in appetite causing weight loss or gain
  • Low energy levels
  • Trouble concentrating
  • Poor self-esteem or self-image
  • Feelings of hopelessness
  • Mood swings
  • Irritability
  • Self-harming behaviors
  • Suicidal thoughts or actions

Knowing what to look for will help you recognize when your teen is struggling and needs help, and early intervention can prevent your teen’s depression from worsening to the point of self-harm or suicidal ideation.

How Can I Help My Teen Overcome Depression?

Many young adults and adults have trouble admitting they’re depressed. Stigmas around mental illness and access to mental health treatment leave many teens feeling they can manage depression with drugs, alcohol, or process addictions like video games and smartphones.

Showing an interest in your teenager’s life, beginning nonjudgemental conversations, and getting the support they need are the best ways to support your teen through depression and other mood disorders. In reality, depression is treatable, and family therapy can help.

How Can Family Therapy Help with Teenage Depression?

Family therapy is a type of group therapy that helps loved ones reconnect, improve communication, and become equipped to handle mental health challenges at home. Programs with family systems therapy and functional family therapy can help parents understand and support their teen’s depression. Psychoeducation is another tool family therapists use to help the whole family understand mental health and the role mental wellness plays in daily life.

For most families, a therapist will work with various behavioral therapy techniques to change negative thought patterns and behaviors. This can improve family dynamics and help parents and teens recognize early signs of depression. Most importantly, family therapy can normalize mood disorders and changes in mood, making it easier for the whole family to discuss their mental health.

Treatment for Teenage Depression at Imagine Seattle

The best way to address mental health at home is with open, honest conversations. Family therapy can help parents and teens talk about depression and other mood disorders. At Imagine Seattle, our team provides a range of trauma-informed programs for adolescents and their families. With individual, group, and family therapy, patients and Imagine Seattle receive the tools they need for mental and physical wellness.

Our outpatient programs provide families with both care and flexibility. With medication management and education advocacy, Imagine Seattle can help your child thrive.

Reconnect with Your Teen in Family Therapy at Imagine Seattle

Our Imagine Seattle team believes that strong family support can make a significant difference for teens dealing with depression. We provide family therapy for teenage depression that can help the entire family. Learn more about how Imagine Seattle can help your teen and your family by calling us at 888.346.0473 or filling out our online form.