How Do Antidepressants Affect Teens?

When Teen Girls go on medication for mental illnesses, such as Anxiety, or Depression the side effects can be worrisome. The mental health of teen girls is affected by antidepressants, but to what extent? As a parent, it’s essential to know these effects and what you can do to combat them. 

Teen Depression Caused by Myriad Internal & External Struggles

When a teenage girl is depressed, many adults chalk it up to adolescent angst or hormones. However, it’s more than just being a bit down or having a bad day – it’s a severe mental illness that needs to be addressed immediately. Teen girls face a wide variety of pressures, from the changes encountered through puberty to questions about their self-identity and what type of group they fit into.

The transition from childhood to adult – adolescence – can be a tumultuous one that brings on internal and external conflict as a struggle between wanting to assert independence yet still need the guidance of their parents. However, this is made worse with depression.

Some teen girls dealing with it do not necessarily appear sad, just as they are not always withdrawn from others. For some depressed teens, irritability, aggression, and rage are the more obvious traits. 

The Truth About Antidepressants 

Taking antidepressants may not always be the safest route, even if it may be the best solution. Recently, the FDA reported that an extensive analysis of trials showed antidepressants responsible for causing – or increasing – suicidal thinking and tendencies in some children and adolescents.

During this analysis, they found that 4% of those taking the medication had increased these thoughts, versus the 2% taking the placebo. These results will not be the same for every child, just as they will not work the same. However, it is better to offer treatment in some form than to go with just therapy if there is a chemical imbalance in the brain. 

Other Alternatives to Teen Drug Medication?

After considering the dangers and negative side effects of antidepressants, parents often turn to other, provenly effective forms of mental health treatment. The following are just three examples of a long list to consider. 

Traditional One-on-One Therapy

Traditional one-on-one therapy, also known as talk therapy,  is the most common and provenly effective form of therapy. Talk therapy effectively treats all forms of emotional and mental health-related issues, including trauma, depression, and anxiety. 

Talk therapy, however, is sometimes not intensive enough on its own. If talk therapy fails, parents should consider more intensive forms of therapy.

Intensive Outpatient Programs

Intensive outpatient programs, or IOP’s, are therapeutic programs designed to clinically address behavioral and mental health-related issues such as depression, eating disorders, substance abuse, and other disorders. 

IOP’s combine inpatient treatment methodologies but still allow patients to return home once therapy sessions are over. IOP’s typically last 30-90 days in duration.

Residential Treatment 

Residential treatment is a facility that provides intensive help for youth that struggle with severe mental health and behavioral issues. This type of treatment is the most intensive type of treatment and is often used after other modes of therapy have failed. While these facilities are often seen as treatment programs that behaviorally modify negative behaviors in troubled teens, top-tier facilities, like that of Clearview Girls Academy, are also well-versed in providing the most cutting-edge therapeutic solutions to mentally ill teenage girls.  

Clearview Girls Academy - Serving Mentally Ill Teenage Girls for Over 25 Years

Clearview Girls Academy is a Christian therapeutic boarding school for troubled teenage girls. For over 25 years, we have championed teenage girls in overcoming a wide range of issues, including adoption issues (reactive attachment disorders), self-harm (self-mutilation), cutting issues, or eating disorders (anorexia, bulimia, anorexia nervosa), and of course, generalized anxiety and major depression.

"Beloved, let us love one another, for love is from God; and everyone who loves is born of God and knows God. The one who does not love does not know God, for God is love. By this, the love of God was manifested in us, that God has sent His only begotten Son into the world so that we might live through Him. In this is love, not that we loved God, but that He loved us and sent His Son to be the propitiation for our sins. Beloved, if God so loved us, we also ought to love one another." 1 John 4:7-11

While we are known as a Christian boarding school, we proudly offer cutting-edge depression treatments such as cognitive-behavioral therapy and animal assisted-therapy to girls with treatment-resistant depression. 

For immediate assistance, please call us today at (888) 796-5484.