The Holidays and Teen Depression

Nov 18, 2021

Thanksgiving through Christmas is supposed to be the happiest time of the year.

Lots of family, friends, new gifts and toys and winter break at school.

So why is this time of the year the worst time for teens with more suicides than any other time? Even at the adult level, depression will run rampant.

Even though your teen may not be expression him/herself, they may be feeling very isolated.  How would you know if you didn’t ask?  All of this family attention could actually be having the exact opposite effect on your teen and driving them into a type of black hole.  

Here are some facts you should know as we enter the holiday season:

  • According to the CDC, suicide is the second leading cause of death for teens.
  • 40% of all teens have experienced suicidal thoughts.
  • 80% of teens have told someone that they are too stressed out every day.
  • 65% of teens have felt depressed in 2021.
  • 77.9% of teen suicides are by boys, and in most cases violent.
  • The most common form of suicide for teen girls is suffocation due to overdosing.
  • Race has some impact of suicide, but not enough to make a difference.  
  • The higher the standard of family living is, the great the feelings of depression.

Top traits for depression and potential suicide among teens are:

  • Isolation from their friends
  • Sleeping too much or too little
  • Ongoing fatigue
  • Ongoing despair
  • Withdrawal from school or thoughts of their future
  • Extreme mood swings
  • Spending more than 4 hours per day on their cell phones
  • Addicted to social media sites
  • Constant comparison of their life based on social media
  • Feeling that their friends have better lives than them
  • Grades dropping for no apparent reason
  • Feelings of giving up on school or friends

If you have noticed any of these traits, it may be time to ask a professional for help. Don’t be afraid to ask for help. You should have the conversation with your child and then find some tools that will help you.  We have published all types of terrific articles at www.abrighterday.org under the “Get Help” tab.  

Don’t be afraid to search for teen counselors, teen therapists, or family therapy services near you.  

Of course, please don’t hesitate to reach out to us anytime.

Wishing you a terrific, safe, and healthy end of the 2021 year and a fresh start in 2022.

Sincerely yours,

Elliot

What is Disability Pride Month?

Disability Pride Month celebrates the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) which was passed on July 26, 1990, to prohibit discrimination against people with disabilities. 

It is also a chance to share the joy and pride that disabled people can bring to their local and global communities!

Stony Brook University describes that “the month is a time to recognize and celebrate how disability is a natural part of human diversity in which people living with disabilities can take pride”.

What Does the Disability Pride Month Flag Symbolize?

The Black Field: this field represents the disabled people who have lost their lives due not only to their illness, but also to negligence, suicide, and eugenics.

The Colors: Each color on this flag represents a different aspect of disability or impairment.

    • Red: Physical disabilities
    • Yellow: Cognitive and intellectual disabilities
    • White: Invisible and undiagnosed disabilities
    • Blue: Mental illness
    • Green: Sensory perception disabilities

How Do Disabilities Affect Mental Health?

People with disabilities report experiencing frequent mental distress almost 5 times as often as adults without disabilities. 

In 2018, an estimated 17.4 million (32.9%) adults with disabilities experienced frequent mental distress, defined as 14 or more reported mentally unhealthy days in the past 30 days. 

Frequent mental distress is associated with poor health behaviors, increased use of health services, mental disorders, chronic disease, and limitations in daily life.

There are several reasons why becoming disabled can make an individual vulnerable to depression. The disability – a loss in and of itself – leads to other painful losses as well, which is a common theme in each of the following.

  • Loss of a Life Direction or Purpose 
  • Decrease in Self-Esteem 
  • Sadness, Anger, or Frustration over Career Loss or Changes 
  • The Struggle of Living with a Disability 
  • Feeling Bored

5 Ways to Manage Your Mental Health

  • Connect with others. Talk with people you trust about your concerns and how you are feeling. 
  • Make time to unwind. Try to participate in activities you enjoy.
  • Take breaks from watching, reading, or listening to news stories on social media, tv, radio, or the internet. 
  • Know where and how to get mental health treatment and other support services and resources, including counseling or therapy (in person or through tele health services).
  • Take care of your body.

Take deep breaths, stretch, or meditate

Try to eat healthy, well-balanced meals

Exercise regularly

Get plenty of sleep

Avoid excessive alcohol and drug use

Treat your inbox to mental wellness tips.

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