Depression: An Epidemic


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Depression is an epidemic that is often overlooked, especially in teens.

Depression is a far-spread epidemic that is often overlooked that affects teens and adults worldwide. In fact, 16 million Americans deal with depression every year. But at West Branch alone, in a survey done in 2017, 29.7% of 8th graders, 43.9% of 10th graders and 39.7% of 12th graders reported feeling sad or depressed most days in the last 12 months. As well as affecting high school students worldwide, it’s affecting their ability to stay motivated and their ability to concentrate. It also affects the student’s everyday functions like eating, sleeping, and keeping good hygiene. With depression affecting things in your everyday life, it also affects the student’s attendance, grades, and behavior.

There isn’t just one cause of depression. It can be a number of things, from a chemical imbalance to an environmental situation, but the problem with depression can be much worse if it goes untreated for a long period of time. Untreated depression is the biggest cause of suicide. Suicide is the second leading cause of death in ages 10-24, but even though the number of students struggling with depression is so high, less than half of them are actually receiving treatment. If you are struggling with depression, getting treatment as soon as possible can save your life. There are a couple of treatment plans like medicine, therapy, or other coping mechanisms. Although, it has been proven that there is a higher success rate of people cured of depression if you are receiving treatment through therapy and taking your medicine as instructed. But if you or anyone you know is feeling depressed, I strongly encourage you to reach out and talk to someone you trust like a parent, older sibling, teacher, or even a school guidance counselor so they can help you get the help you need before it’s too late. If you or someone you know are struggling with depression, don’t hesitate to call or text the suicide hotline @1-800-273-8255.


Source: Psychology Today