Navigating the minefield of human emotion takes experience, and young adults by definition haven’t had the chance to acquire enough. They’re going to over-react to that which is not important, and under-react to that which is important. Depression in young adults often comes from such scenarios. But you can expect the young adult in your life to hide what should be openly discussed. To help you read between the lines, following are several signs a young adult that you know may be experiencing depression.
1. Loss of Concentration
If daydreaming results in a lack of attentiveness, then think of depression as the daytime equivalent of a nightmare. The mind is caught up in scenarios which continue to multiply on themselves. In a young adult, you can expect their thoughts are wildly out of proportion – though, in their eyes, utterly realistic. Naturally, with so many ideas spinning around their heads, they won’t be able to concentrate. Depression in young adults often manifests in a loss of concentration.
2. Waning or Loss of Any Interest in New or Previously-Enjoyed Activities
Depression causes a kind of apathy in most people. One positive aspect of depression in young adults is that it’s easier to notice because of this. If your son or daughter suddenly loses interest in things for which they previously had a passion, or if new activities fail to interest them, depression may be the cause.
3. Social Withdrawal
This is one of the most apparent signs of depression in young adults. Sometimes the withdrawal is just from friends, sometimes it’s from family; sometimes it’s both. People are social beings. In general, withdrawal is indicative of depression.
4. Changes in Diet or Rest Patterns
In a healthy state of mind, people are more likely to have regular food intake and regular sleeping patterns. When one’s mood is depressed, things like hunger become secondary. Sleep can also become difficult. These symptoms are as indicative in adults of depression as they are in young adults. The difference is that young adults are still developing and need to have the proper quotient of rest and nutrition. If you notice such changes, it’s very likely depression is at the root.
5. Lack of Energy, or Complaints of Frequent Tiredness
Everyone is different. Another way depression can manifest itself is in frequent fatigue. Depression in young adults can result in sleeplessness, or slothfulness. Watch for either.
Depending on personality, another manifestation of depression comes in the form of irritability, restlessness, or agitation. Remember your own experience as a young man or woman, and you will remember times when you seemed angry for no reason. Now you recognize the root was what so-and-so said Sunday, about which you were depressed. The same applies to many young adults today.
7. Frequent Weeping
This is a very obvious sign, but most teens and young adults aren’t going to be so open as to publicly portray what they’re feeling inside. Still, if you see a young adult crying regularly, even at the slightest thing, it’s possible there is some depressive cause; even likely.
Every individual is unique, so it’s best to approach them individually. If you are looking for a help program, try to find one like The Crossroads which has an emphasis on individual treatment. The truth about people is that there is no one-size-fits-all approach to their emotional and psychological health.
At-risk teens could make real mistakes in an emotional state that was an over-reaction to begin with; so watch for signs of depression in your young-adult loved ones. You could prevent a major breakdown.