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Depression and Young Adults: The Facts

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Youth is a time of life frequently associated with happiness and positivity. Young people often are perceived as cheery, joyful, and filled with hope for the future. The fact is, however, that depression is a very real problem spanning all generations—including the youngest among us. Depression in young adults, furthermore, is a very real problem.

Recent studies indicate that as many as 1 in 20 women aged 20-44 suffer from clinical depression; and one in seven young men ages 16-24 experience conditions of depression or anxiety every year.

What can you do as a parent?

As a parent, you can do something about depression and young adults. You can help your young adult cope with the saddening, sometimes stifling symptoms of depression; but first, it is important for you to accept the possibility of parenting a depressed child.

We all like to envision our children as perfect beings; ethereal spirits above all imperfections, and certainly above any form of psychological disorders. Just be assured that—as our statistics indicate—depression and young adults is a common and widespread problem; one that can be managed and remedied in a variety of ways.

Next learn to recognize the signs and symptoms of depression. In young adults, these tend to include sad, angry and irritable feelings, emotions of worthlessness and negativity, poor performance and attendance patterns at school, drug and alcohol abuse, excessive eating and sleeping, self-harm, and loss of interest in social and recreational activities.

Most young people display most or all of these symptoms at one time or another; yet if your child is showing strong and consistent symptoms of depression, then it may be time to seek help for him/her.

When it comes to depression and young adults, valuable help can come in various forms. You can refer your son or daughter to their school counselor or university clinic or counseling center, or take them to a mental health facility yourself.

Once a mental health assessment is made, then your child might be prescribed medications and/or talk therapy; hopefully and with any luck, their condition will improve and someday be resolved.

Regardless of the exact nature or severity of your son or daughter’s depressive condition, the diagnosis of this condition all starts with a conversation. Let your young adult know that they can come to you with any problems or concerns that they might be having at any time. The knowledge that you are on their team may in itself help alleviate their depression.

Journey Home East can help

Journey Home East, based in Asheville, NC, is geared toward young women who are ready to build upon skills learned in therapeutic settings and begin the transition towards independence. To learn more, visit or call (855) 290-9684.