“I didn’t get to play video games; I’m so depressed.” “I’m so depressed because I didn’t get my acting role.” You always hear the term depressed as a synonym for sad; but it is not a synonym. Depression is a mood disorder, it changes your feelings, your actions, and even tasks such as sleeping. Since people constantly use the word, depressed, as a replacement for sad, it takes away the meaning of the word.
Another stigma for depression is on teenagers. People think that teen depression is a phase in their age group. “It’s just a phase, you’ll get over it sometime soon.” “You’re not depressed, you are just overreacting.” What those people don’t know about teen depression is that is a very serious topic and issue. According to mentalhealthamerica.net about 500,000 teenagers attempt to commit suicide annually; but 5,000 of them succeed.
To actually tell if you or someone else is depressed, I am currently reading a book, The Depression Cure, and it told us the symptoms of depression. They are listed as: Depressed mood, Loss of Interest or pleasure in all activities, Large increase or decrease in appetite/ weight, Insomnia or hypersomnia, Intense fatigue, Excessive feelings of guilt or worthlessness, Difficulty concentrating or making decisions, and frequent thoughts of death or suicidality. Referenced from the book, if you have five or more of these symptoms, you are diagnosed with depression.
In class, all peers made a slogan relating to their Teen Brain Health topic. My slogan was, “ Depression is NOT a choice, so use your voice.” I wanted my slogan to be simple and catchy; so I added one rhyme to it. I wanted to send the message of, you don’t get to choose whether to be depressed or not to be depressed; it is just diagnosed. One of the ways to prevent depression for all ages, is social support. So to have social support, you must communicate about your thoughts and feelings.