Depression is a serious condition that if left untreated can have a negative effect on a young woman’s well-being, self-esteem and social relationships. Depression in young adults could remain undiagnosed for many years and many often fail to receive the proper treatment until the issue becomes problematic. Depression in young women is especially a concern, because females are twice as likely as males to suffer from the condition.
Although experiencing sadness is a normal part of life, severe and recurring depression is not. While a number of young women experience depression due to traumatic events, your daughter may develop depression as a result of non-traumatic changes in her life. For example: transitioning to a different phase in life, such as college or moving out on her own, may induce feelings of fear, anxiety, worry and inadequacy.
Is My Daughter Depressed
Here are a few symptoms of depression in young women you should be aware of:
- Unexplained sadness, anxiety and feelings of emptiness
- Unusual fatigue and low energy
- Difficulty focusing and making decisions
- Loss of interest in normal activities and hobbies
- Excessive sleeping or difficulty sleeping
- Pessimism and hopelessness
- Loss of appetite or overeating
- Restlessness, irritability and difficulty interacting socially
- Feeling worthless, helpless or guilty
- Problems with digestion, recurring pains and aches that are not resolved with treatment
- Suicide attempts or thoughts of committing suicide
Depression in College
College marks a major transition in a young woman's life. While many meet the change with excitement and enthusiasm, others may feel unprepared or even scared. A new school, new friends, new environment, new activities and new sources of pressure can feel overwhelming.
When your daughter goes off to college, she may be living away from family for the first time. She may also have to adjust to life with a new schedule that she must manage on her own; leaving her to make huge changes to accommodate new challenges and new relationships with friends and roommates.
Depression in young women is also common in their college years, because this is usually a time when they begin to manage money on their own while trying to juggle jobs and schoolwork. Transitioning into adulthood and all its responsibilities may cause your daughter to experience extreme anxiety, fear or sadness.
Treating Depression in Young Women
Inpatient depression treatment is generally only necessary if the condition is severe. Very often, parents and family members can help young adults learn to adapt and cope with this mental disorder through strong support and communication, and sometimes therapy. Many colleges offer these services on campus and they are very accessible to students. As a parent, you can help your daughter manage depression in college through encouragement, support, and monitoring her progress.
Keep in touch and maintain open, non-judgmental communication with your daughter. This will help her become more communicative, confident and secure in the knowledge that you are there to support her. Open communication can help you to accurately assess her mental state and determine of you should suggest seeing a professional.
When to Seek Professional Help
Persistent and recurring depression that intensifies should never be ignored. Often, parents who think they were caught off-guard by their child's condition may have unknowingly witnessed the symptoms worsening for some time. Often parents ignore these signs, thinking they are just part of normal changes that young women go through when they enter college or experience another significant life change.
If you sense your daughter is suffering from severe depression in college, consider seeking professional help. At Brookhaven Retreat, we provide depression treatment in an environment that encourages effective healing and recovery. We understand how difficult it can be for young women to cope with depression, so we’ve designed a treatment plan that will address the root of the problem and help your daughter find her way back to wellness.
Call us to today to discuss the best treatment option that will meet your child's needs.