Prevent Depression In Adolescents
Teenage Depression is one of the most common, undiagnosed, unrecognized and untreated health problems among youths worldwide.
Depression causes serious social and educational problems, leading to increased risk for suicide and substance use.
In a review of a Lancet article on teenage depression a researcher says:
“In view of the disability associated with depression in adolescents, much more needs to be done to recognise and treat those with depression early and to develop innovative and cost-effective methods to improve access and deliver prevention programmes to a far wider group of adolescents particularly in non-specialist settings and in low-income and middle-income countries where the burden is greatest”
Some measures that have been shown to help prevent the disorder for those at risk include:
- making sure that the adolescents maintain a good relationship with peers and family members
- introducing coping mechanisms
- establishing emotional regulation capacities
Cognitive Behavioural Therapy
A prevention strategy for high-risk adolescents, called cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT), has also been found to have a profound effect by reducing the risk of developing depression, through teaching the patient to be optimistic in their thinking.
Interpersonal therapy (IPT) has also had preventive effects, although most countries have a shortage of professionals able to administer the therapies. To make access to CBT and IPT more readily available in non-specialist settings, the authors suggest the introduction of counseling programs in schools and primary care units, and through cheaper options, such as the Internet.