Teenager depressed? Drugs are not the only answer. In this article, you’ll learn about some of the pros and cons of prescription drugs as well as an effective alternative program that can really help save your teen from the clutches of depression.
A parent with a depressed teenager may be at a loss for what to do. She wants more than anything to get her teen help, but she may be frightened by all the side effects of prescription drugs. So let’s take a look at the positives and negatives of these medications and then we will examine natural alternatives.
Prescription drugs do work for some kids, but for other kids, they make the symptoms worse. It is this population of kids that you need to be concerned with. For instance, the antidepressant Paxil has been implicated in the suicides of a number of teens because one of the side effects is that it can increase suicidal thoughts. Obviously, this is dangerous side effect. Since we cannot cover every possible side effect of every available drug, we will talk in generalities. Other common side effects include weight gain (not a good thing for teenage girls), anxiety and a sense of impending doom.
Side effects are particular to the drug prescribed for a depressed teenager, so make sure to check with your doctor. Also, it’s important to understand that for doctors, prescribing drugs is a hit-or-miss situation. If you decided to go the prescription medicine route, your teen may have to try a number of drugs until you find one that works.
Some other things you need to know are that drugs are not a cure. They do work to suppress the side effects, but if your child stops taking his meds, the symptoms will return. This is why it pays to take your child to therapy to figure out what is causing these symptoms in your teenager. Depressed teens may need a two-pronged approach in order to get better.
Finally, some of these drugs are new on the market and so the long term effects of giving a teenager antidepressants have not been studied. Since the teen is right in the middle of brain development (unused neural circuits in the brain are being discarded and new connections in the prefrontal cortex are being formed), prescription drugs may alter the course of that development.
For many parents, the risk of giving drugs to their depressed teenager outweigh the benefits, so this is why they choose to use natural alternatives instead. Here’s some things you need to know about using these natural solutions.
First, look for a remedy that contains Passion Flower and St. John’s Wort. These herbs work together to reduce negative thinking and promote feel-good neurotransmitters in the brain, generating a balanced mood and a positive outlook. Although these herbs have been used for hundreds of years and passed down by countless generations, they have also recently been proven effective in clinical studies. Since they have few side effects and no long term implications they are a good, natural solution for a teenager depressed.
Obviously, the actions of a supplement are supported by healthy food. Center your teen’s diet around simple, organic food like lean meat, fish, nuts, beans and fresh vegetables and fruit. The importance of this is that if your teen has been depressed for some time, his brain can use the healthy fats, phytonutrients and protein that are found in unprocessed food. Together with the supplement, this can help his brain begin to heal.
Once your teen starts feeling better, encourage him to exercise. Exercise relieves stress and rejuvenates the mind. It also stops the downward spiral of negative thinking.
So there you have it: a simple, effective program to help a depressed teenager get his life back without drugs and all their dangers. Together, a natural supplement, healthy food and regular exercise can work wonders. Sometimes the simple, practical solutions are the ones that work the best and are the healthiest in the long run.
Laura Ramirez helps others achieve health and wellness through her research. Learn more about her findings on helping a teenager depressed by going to www.cure-depression-naturally.com.