Depression in children and teens is a growing problem that often goes unrecognized and untreated. Depression affects young people from all races, cultures, and socioeconomic backgrounds. Before puberty, depression occurs equally in boys and girls. After puberty, girls are two to three times more likely than boys to experience depression.1 Depression lasts an average of 8 months in children and adolescents. Even with treatment, at least half of those children and adolescents with depression suffer another depression episode.2
Some children and adolescents are at higher risk for developing depression, such as those who:
- Wagner KD, Brent DA (2009). Depressive disorders and suicide. In BJ Sadock et al., eds., Kaplan and Sadock’s Comprehensive Textbook of Psychiatry, 9th ed., vol. 2, pp. 3652–3663. Philadelphia: Lippincott Williams and Wilkins.
- American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry (2007). Practice parameters for the assessment and treatment of children and adolescents with depressive disorders. Journal of the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry, 46(11): 1503-1526.
Last Revised: April 5, 2011
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