Adolescent Depression & Suicide
Teen Depression is Prevalent
An estimated 8% of 12-to-17 year olds or (2 million young people) experienced at least one major depressive episode during the past year, yet only 39% receive treatment.
Teen Depression is Debilitating
Complications of untreated teen depression are far-reaching and may affect many aspects of a young person’s life, including school absenteeism, lower grades, strained relations with parents and siblings, withdrawal from peers and less social support, emotional distress, increased chance of smoking and alcohol and drug use and the potential for suicide.
Teen Depression Increases Suicide Risk
Suicide is the third leading cause of death in 11 to 18-year-olds. In the majority of adolescent suicide victims, 63%, had psychiatric symptoms — including depression — for more than a year before their deaths. Yet, research tells us that few teens seek help or disclose their thoughts or suicide attempts. While 15% of high school students have suicidal thoughts, less than one in five communicate these thoughts to parents. Similarly, up to 60% of teens who attempt suicide do not disclose their actions. Only 10% of suicide attempts are known to parents.
Read a new fact sheet on youth suicide and prevention.
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