Depression Test

While everyone experiences moments of sadness in their life, there are ways to take a depression test to discover if you are more than just a little bit sad. In our depression test, you can evaluate your symptoms to find out if you are depressed and may need professional help.

Everyone goes through life changing events or daily stresses that might leave them to feel sad frequently. But does this mean they are depressed? For about 18.8 million Americans, depression is an apparent reality. However about 80 percent of the people who do suffer from depression are not seeking professional treatment. Depression is one of the nation’s leading killers among men and women resulting in cases of suicide or other illnesses, which is why it is important to seek treatment. If you are seeking out a depression test then you are actively taking a role in trying to determine whether you or a loved one is suffering from depression. Taking a depression test can help you determine whether or not you might be experiencing the symptoms of depression and could be a good indicator as to whether or not you or your loved one should seek professional medial treatment. 

Depression test: 

  1. Have you experienced a prolonged feeling of lack of interest or pleasure in activities that used to make you happy?
  2. Do you feel down, depressed or hopeless frequently or constantly for more than a week?
  3. Do you have difficulty sleeping or with sleeping too much?
  4. Do you feel lethargic or have little energy?
  5. Do  you have little appetite or frequently experience overeating?
  6. Do you feel like a failure or that you have let yourself or your family down?
  7. Do you have trouble concentrating at work, at home, reading or watching television?
  8. Do you have thoughts that you would be better off dead, or have desires to hurt yourself in some way?

If you have experienced any of the above symptoms and have had them persist for several days or occur frequently throughout the week, it might be time to consult a professional therapist or counselor about your condition. Depression is extremely common, so don’t feel embarrassed to confront the problem. Unfortunately because most people with depression do not seek counseling they end up with worsening symptoms and problems living their day-to-day life. 

Other symptoms of depression include feelings of sadness or unhappiness, frustration or irritability over small issues, loss of interest in activities that used to be fun, reduced sex drive, changes in appetite, changes in weight, slowed thinking or body movements, indecisiveness, decreased concentration, fatigue, feelings of worthlessness, trouble thinking and remembering things. Some of the most serious symptoms of depression include frequent thoughts of death, dying or suicide, crying for no reason or crying over everything, other health issues like anxiety, excessive stress, heartburn and chest pains. Those with depression might have difficulty in going to work or doing chores around the house and taking care of themselves the way they used to. Personal hygiene might be something that is left to the wayside. If you are experiencing any of these symptoms, it is important to get help as soon as possible especially if you are experiencing feelings of desire to commit suicide or self mutilation. Even if you are experiencing mild symptoms, get help as soon as you can because the symptoms, if left untreated, will only get worse. Once the symptoms get worse, the depressed person is likely to be even more unwilling to seek treatment because they don’t care anymore or don’t have a desire to get help for themselves. If a loved one is experiencing these signs of depression, it is important to encourage them to get help immediately. Even if they are unwilling to help themselves, it is important for you to help make them see how vital it is for them to get help. 

There are a variety of treatment options. Counseling and therapy are typically the starting point for many who suffer from depression. Most of the time underlying emotional issues and stress are contributing causes of depression. Some people are also more likely to become depressed based on their genetics and life experiences. For those whose symptoms do not go away with therapy, a doctor may be interested in prescribing antidepressant medications to help assist in alleviating the symptoms of depression. If you are afraid you might not be able to afford professional help, there are many assistance programs or fee counseling and support groups that can help subsidize the cost of counseling to ensure you can receive treatment for your depression. 


What is Depression?

Depression is a serious mental illness that thousands of Americans suffer from every year. Understanding what is depression and how to recognize the signs of depression can help control the disease before it goes too far and results in dire consequences.

People of all ages from teens to the elderly are susceptible to suffer from the mental illness depression. There are several factors than can cause this disease. There are also a variety of signs to watch for to determine if a person may be suffering from depression. However, sometimes these symptoms are disguised by the person with depression and it can be difficult for friends and family to see what is happening before it is too late. Keeping an eye out for the signs of depression can help the person seek treatment early or before the depression has gone too far and results in cases of self mutilation or suicide. Keep reading to find out more about depression, the signs to watch for as well as potential treatment options. 

What is depression?

Many people experience sadness and feelings of distraught or despair. However, depression occurs when these instances last for longer than is healthy or become severe enough the person can no longer operate regularly day to day. There are many causes of depression that can stem from life situations like losing a loved one, losing your job, low self-esteem and others. Some individuals experience chemical imbalances that make them more susceptible to mental illnesses like depression, manic depression (bi-polar), anxiety and  others. Some of the most common feelings associated with feeling depressed include: fatigue, energy loss, difficulty concentrating, making decisions, feelings of sadness or anxiousness, overeating or appetite loss, no interest in activities you used to enjoy, irritability, thoughts of suicide and suicide attempts. Many of these are also considered to be warning signs of depression. If you are experiencing these feelings on a regular basis or for an extended period of time, it is a good idea to seek help as soon as possible. Don’t count on others to find the signs that you are depressed. Do your best to take action and get help.

Warning signs of depression?

Repercussions of depression can be deadly. Often, the depression becomes too much for the person suffering to handle and as a method of escape, they commit suicide. In some even more unfortunate situations, those with the most severe levels of depression kill not only themselves, but their families, friends, co-workers or others. This is just one of the reasons why it is important to know what signs to look for in your family members and friends to ensure you catch on to the signs of depression before they go too far. Here are some of the signs of depression to watch for:

  • Loss of productivity at work, or the person stops showing up at all
  • Frequent illness
  • Difficulty sleeping
  • Severe weight loss or weight gain
  • Withdrawn behaviors
  • Acting moody and irritable
  • Not participating in regular activities they used to enjoy
  • Talking about suicide or death frequently
  • Experiences frequent anxiety 
  • Acts like they simply don’t care anymore
  • Self harm or mutilation. Cutting or burning themselves
  • Aggressive behavior

Depression treatment:

If you or someone you know is experiencing any of the symptoms listed above, get help or encourage them to get help. One of the best ways to treat depression is to seek counseling. Unfortunately most who are clinically depressed do not seek treatment. This is why it is so important for family and friends to watch for the warning signs. In addition to counseling, many who are clinically depressed can take antidepressant medication. This is helpful for those who need to battle levels of depression that exceed simply being able to rely on counseling. However it is important to allow time for the medication to work. It depends on each individual to know how long the medication will take to work. It is also important to make sure and try to put effort into the therapy. While many may have trouble telling their problems to a stranger, remember you are making an effort to help yourself and your loved ones around you. By taking care of your depression, you are not only helping  yourself, you are helping those who care about you.

There are also things you can do on your own to help treat depression. Get up and get moving. Exercise and doing fun physical activities are not only a good way to entertain yourself, they also release endorphins to stimulate your levels of happiness. Get lots of rest and sleep. Sometimes those with depression are overwrought with the pressures of life. Having enough sleep and energy is vital in helping you to be able to combat those pressures. Know and understand that recovery will take time. Be patient with yourself and recovery by taking small steps.


Reasons for Teen Depression

Reasons for teen depression may vary from person to person. Genetics, environment, medical conditions, trauma, and stress can play a role in the reasons for teen depression. Keep reading to find out information on these causes of depression in teens.

Teenage years are full of changes mixed with excitement, independence, craziness, adventure, laughter, learning, and fun! Why then, do some teenagers experience depression? Teen depression is a rising epidemic in society affecting 4 out of 100 teenagers each year. It can be a real challenge and heart ache to see a once vibrant teen slip into the lowly realms of sadness and gloom. Emotional experiences are a normal part of growing up and are useful for learning and growth but may also have the ability to cause prolonged sadness and sorrow. Several factors that may lead to this serious illness of depression could be genetics or family history, environment, medical or physical conditions, and trauma or stress from life’s events.

Genetics/family history

Genetics and a family history of depression have been linked to causes of depression but are not limited to. If there is a history of depression in families, they may share the same genes linked to depression. Chemical imbalances may be inherited giving insight to a teen’s behavior knowing the family history. Physicians will evaluate a teen’s family history of depression when screening for probability of depression. Teens with a history of family depression are more prone to have depressed symptoms; however, not all teens with a family history will inherit this illness.


Just as a rose needs sunlight and water to thrive, teens need love and security. Surrounded in an environment full of contention, abuse, or even poverty can lead to low self esteem contributing to bouts of depression. An unhappy family life full of negative feedback attacks the teen’s outlook on life and the way they feel about themselves. Over time the lack of self esteem can lead them to the paths of depression feeling hopeless and that of a failure. Sometimes a teen with low self esteem can fall to the prey of substance abuse to escape their stressful environment or in some cases teens that abuse drugs and alcohol bring on the depression because of the substances of which they are taking have the ability to alter chemicals within the brain affecting mood changes. Either way, substance abuse is a battle towards the victory of self esteem and control.

Medical or physical conditions

The brain deserves most of the credit for the chemical imbalances which can cause depression. Neurotransmitters aid in communicating between nerve cells in the brain. There are specific neurotransmitters that affect mood and when the levels are running low, depression or sadness can set in. Some medical conditions such as hypothyroidism have also been discovered to lead to depression. Chemical imbalances within the brain can effect mood and in some cases require medication. Prolonged physical disabilities may also lead to depression. Doctors can prescribe medications to clear up symptoms of depression allowing them to disappear with regular doses of prescribed drugs. Treating teens with medication for depression is only recommended in severe cases. Psychotherapies have been proven to be more successful whereas prescribed drugs can sometimes leave negative results leading to more feelings of depression.

Trauma and stress from life’s events

What may seem like a scatter rain shower to an adult, can be a hurricane to a teen when dealing with stress related to life’s events. It is imperative to not take the teen’s emotional instability lightly. They need to feel validated with their emotions and understood. The obvious challenges that can lead to depression are death of a loved one, friend or pet. When grieving is allowed to go on for long periods of time, the teen may become vulnerable to depression. Talking things through with someone can create great strides in overcoming the traumatic event that occurred. Other storms related to teen depression can be when parents separate, divorce, or remarry. Moving to a new area, switching schools, and adventuring out to find new friendships can also lead to depression. Any event that can cause trauma or stress to an individual teen has the potential to cause symptoms of depression. Parents will sometimes ignore the warning signs of depression knowing the behavior is normal to life’s challenges. Adjustment is necessary to all of life’s events but sadness and despair does not need to consume the teen in great lengths. Parents can help their teen move the dark cloud of gloom and be the rainbow of hope for healing.

Recognizing the reason for depression can enlighten those persons when prescribing the needed help for the teen. Just as a gardener tills his garden and alters the soil according to the needs for successful plants, teens need to be cultivated with love, understanding, and security. The sun will come out tomorrow.


Types of Depression

There are several different types of depression.  This article contains information on these types of depression: major depression (clinical depression), dysthymia, adjustment disorder with depressed mood, bipolar disorder, and seasonal affective disorder.

Depression like teenagers comes in all shapes and sizes. The term depressed can be used quite loosely at times. How often might we hear in a group of teenagers the phrase, “I’m so depressed”.  In reality, they probably are! Depression has been broken down into several types with similar but varying characteristics. A few such types of depression are major depression (also known as clinical depression), dysthymia, bipolar disorder, seasonal affective disorder and adjustment disorder with depressed mood. Knowing the differences can enable parents understanding when seeking treatment for their teen.

Major depression (clinical depression)

Sadness lasting longer than 2 weeks is a common symptom of major depression Teens are naturally emotional with all the bodily and hormonal changes developing during the adolescent phases but prolonged sadness is a sign of depression and should be gauged and monitored closely. Major depression can prevent teens from finding pleasure in regular activities they once enjoyed. Teens compared to adults differ in response to depression. An adult shows more signs of melancholy behavior whereas a teen will become more irritable and angry. Recognizing changes in behavior is the first step in diagnosing major depression. Other symptoms of major depression may include sleep disorders, slow in motion, lack of concentration, disassociation with social events, frequent changes in mood, declined interest in school, poor grades, loss of self worth, helplessness, hopelessness, low self esteem, feelings of guilt, and thoughts of death and or suicide. As parents become aware of obvious changes in teens behavior, the better off the depressed teen will be. It has been found that teens who share their feelings of depression to someone have a higher success rate of being cured and or spared of depression. Medication is an option but is not recommended for teens 18 and under. Psychotherapy has been found to be more successful. Although in some cases, medicines are a wise choice in helping the teen.


Dysthymia disorder holds the same characteristics as major depression but not as severe. It is a chronic illness lasting longer than major depression. Sometimes it can start in childhood and go undiagnosed assuming the child has always been an emotional or moody person. The sad or hopeless disposition may be passed off as the child’s personality and go on for many years untreated. Dysthymia disorder lasts every day for 2 years in adults and 1 year or less for children or adolescents. Adolescents will show more signs of irritability than the more common symptoms of depression. Teens with this disorder will struggle every day for 1 year with despair and hopelessness. By evaluating the teen’s behavior and mood patterns over extended months, a correct diagnosis can be made. If left untreated, a more serious depression can occur. Similar treatments used with major depression may be used for dysthymia disorder. It is possible to completely recover from dysthymia but some may need maintained treatment throughout their life.

Adjustment disorder with depressed mood

Adjustment disorder is more prevalent in teens than adults. It is the reaction to an event that occurred within the last 3 months. Stressors as they are called set off a string of emotional turmoil causing the teen to show symptoms of depression. The events can be quite traumatic but relevantly minor such as breaking up with a boyfriend or girlfriend, moving to a new area, or not getting an “A” in a subject in school they worked diligently on. Depending on the support from friends and family can determine the length or severity of the symptoms adjustment disorder can bring. Talking about challenges or heart breaking events with family or peers can reduce the intensity of the low mood substantially. Parents can teach their children how to problem solve when situations arise and show them when one door closes, another one opens. Looking on the positive side of things can also help. Helping the teen to put things into perspective may allow them to see that things will get better and this feeling is only temporary.

Bipolar disorder

Bipolar disorder could be described as one person on a teeter totter running back and forth allowing the teeter totter to go up and down or finding balance when standing in the middle. Moods in a person with bipolar disorder go up and down just like a teeter totter. They can be invigorated with the thrill of going up (mania) but then be left devastated as the plank goes downward (depression) with a jolt. The bipolar patient can find balance at times especially with treatment which is highly recommended with bipolar disorder. Also known as manic depression, bipolar disorder refers to levels of high and low in mood changes. The first occurrences of bipolar may appear in late adolescence and early adulthood. A lot of times the symptoms will go unnoticed but can escalate overtime causing inability to function in everyday settings. The manic end of the spectrum involves high energy levels with impulsive tendencies, unable to concentrate, moving from one idea to the next and reckless behavior. The depressed end of the spectrum shows hopelessness, lack of sleep, irritability, and thoughts of death or suicide. Sometimes patients with this disorder will not seek help because of the way they feel when they are “up” forgetting about the downside to bipolar disorder. Medication is the first choice when treating bipolar disorder but alternative talk methods can also be affective.

Seasonal affective disorder

Seasonal affective disorder or SAD carries the same symptoms of depression with the exception of occurring the same time each year during a specific season. A change of sunlight during the winter months has been a known cause of SAD leaving researchers to believe the importance of sunlight to the brain in producing key hormones that affect mood. Experts believe that two hormones melatonin and serotonin are linked to SAD. High levels of serotonin can act as a shield to fight depression. Serotonin is heightened with exposure to sunlight but when decreased, specifically during the winter season, can cause acute levels of depression. High levels of melatonin are produced in the body when it’s dark or when days are shorter such as during the winter months. Sleep is associated with melatonin causing a person to feel more tired and immovable. Seeking sunlight through exercise or outdoor activities during the winter months can help prevent seasonal affective disorder to keep the hormones in check.

Recognizing the different types of depression will allow an open tunnel for learning the best treatment for the depressed teen. No two persons are alike just as affects of depression can differ. Take notes, talk to someone, bask in the sun, and seek the help needed for a healthy and balanced life.


Sadness vs. Depression

There can be a fine line when comparing sadness vs. depression. Persistent sadness is a symptoms of depression in teens, but not the only sign of depression. This article offers information on teen depression, symptoms of depression, and signs to watch for.

Without sad, there could be no happy. Ironically, without sadness, there would be no depression. Persistent sadness is the most common symptom of depression in teens. All teens experience sadness some time in their adolescent life but its good to know when the sadness is more than just a response to an event. Sadness is defined as an emotion similar to feelings of helplessness, loss, grief, misery and sorrow. Feelings of sadness can be normal in these conditions but are usually temporary with the possibility of declining within a short period of time. If sadness continues longer than 2 weeks, it could be teen depression.

Teen depression

What is depression? Depression is a dropped level of happiness that may continue for long periods of time. It can interrupt a person’s daily routine giving no reason for the intensity of feeling “blue”.  It can be associated with the same characteristics or moods of sadness. The difference is the intensity and length of time one experiences this sadness or helplessness.  Symptoms of depression in teens may vary. It can be a combination of hopelessness, feelings of being helpless, guilt, fear, anger, anxiety, despair and an increased loss of interest in pleasure, grief or pain. Teens may show more anger and irritability than adults when depressed. Depression can be harmful to the body causing brain dysfunction which can ultimately lead to suicide attempts, or suicidal thoughts and tendencies. There are symptoms parents can watch for in their teen before the teen reaches a point of no return.

Symptoms of depression

It is not uncommon to watch teens change their moods or emotions. It is quite typical for a teen to become overwhelmed by school, peers, and family obstacles. Teens go through phases which can be categorized as “growing pains” and are often taken lightly. This can be a tragic mistake if persistent symptoms of teen depression are ignored. It is important for parents to know the difference between depression and normal reactions to sadness.

Signs to watch for:

  • Decline in energy
  • Noticeable changes in eating habits and weight
  • Unable to concentrate
  • Increased sadness or irritability
  • Sleeping too much or too little
  • Loss of interest in activities previously enjoyed
  • Not feeling valued
  • Feelings of guilt
  • Movements are slow
  • Presence of death and suicidal thoughts

Although most teens have some or all of these symptoms at some time or another, continued symptoms over long extended periods can be reason to believe they are suffering from teen depression and should seek professional help. The more observant and in tune a parent can be with their teen’s behavior, the less severe depression could be. There are other symptoms of depression that may appear to be signs of a more rebellious teenager rather than that of depression. Parents need to be aware that unruly behavior could also be a cry out for help from their teen.

Other related symptoms of depression:

Poor performance in school and frequent absences

  • Threats or attempts of running away from home
  • Abuse of alcohol or substances
  • Unexplained causes of repeated head, muscle, and stomach aches
  • Not wanting to spend time with family and friends
  • Social confinement
  • Unable to communicate well
  • Frequent mood swings
  • Dangerous and reckless behavior
  • Easily bored and gloomy
  • Changes in fashion with no regard to appearance
  • Fear of acceptance and failure
  • Heightened levels of irritability, rage, hostility, and crying
  • Questions or concerns of death
  • Complications with relationships

Prolonged sadness is the stepping stone to depression. 30% of all teens with symptoms of depression go untreated. Teen depression untreated can lead to fatal consequences. Learning the differences between sadness and depression could improve the statistics of teen suicide. Teens are emotional creatures but may be sounding out the trump of despair and desperately need someone who will listen. Sadness disappears over time but depression remains without proper treatment. Go ahead, have a good cry but if it lasts longer than 2 weeks, find someone who can plug up the river and give some peace of mind to all parties involved.

It is normal for a teen to be sad once in a while. After all, teens are dealing with all kinds of emotions and changes in their hormones and physical development. Problems may seem magnified to a teen who is dealing with the pressures of school, friends, work, and home life. What may seem like a mole hill to an adult, can be a mountain to a teen. Working through problems together with your teen can make a world of difference and give them the stability or strength they need in an ever changing world. Teens in turn should talk to someone they trust about their feelings of sadness and depression. Happiness is the goal and unfortunately cannot be achieved without the experience of sadness. Sadness is like a river leading to a pool of happiness but if left to run wild for long periods of time, can be like the depth of the ocean swallowing the teen through their sorrow and pain. There is hope and awareness is the key for treatment.


Depression Warning Signs

Adolescence is an unsettling time, with the many physical, emotional, psychological and social changes that accompany this stage of life. Depression is very common in teenagers. Keep reading for more information on teen depression warning signs.

Stress from the pressure to have good grades, be a star athlete, or from peers can result in adolescent or teenage depression.  If your teen experiences some of the following warning signs – please see a therapist in your area.  We also provide information on residential treatment centers that have on site therapist to deal with teen depression.

Recognizing Adolescent / Teenage Depression:

These symptoms may indicate depression, particularly when they last for more than two weeks:
Poor performance in school
Withdrawal from friends and activities
Sadness and hopelessness
Lack of enthusiasm, energy or motivation
Anger and rage
Overreaction to criticism
Feelings of being unable to satisfy ideals
Poor self-esteem or guilt
Indecision, lack of concentration or forgetfulness
Restlessness and agitation
Changes in eating or sleeping patterns
Substance abuse
Problems with authority
Suicidal thoughts or actions

Get help for youth with adolescent depression –

Causes of Teen Depression

Causes of teen depression can vary from one adolescent to another. This article has information on some of the most common causes of teenage depression facing our youth today. There are many other causes of teen depression, but treatment is available for many types of depression.

Depression can be a transient response to many situations and stresses. In adolescents, depressed mood is common because of the normal maturation process, the stress associated with it, the influence of sex hormones, and independence conflicts with parents.

It may also be a reaction to a disturbing event, such as the death of a friend or relative, a breakup with a boyfriend or girlfriend, or failure at school. Adolescents, who have low self-esteem, are highly self-critical, and who feel little sense of control over negative events are particularly at risk to become depressed when they experience stressful events.

True teen depression is often difficult to diagnose because normal adolescent behavior is marked by both up and down moods, with alternating periods of feeling ‘the world is a great place’ and ‘life sucks’. These moods may alternate over a period of hours or days.

Persistent depressed mood, faltering school performance, failing relations with family and friends, substance abuse, and other negative behaviors may indicate a serious depressive episode. These symptoms may be easy to recognize, but depression in adolescents often manifests very differently than these classic symptoms.

Excessive sleeping, change in eating habits, even criminal behavior (like shoplifting) may be signs of depression. Another common symptom of adolescent depression is an obsession with death, which may take the form either of suicidal thoughts or of fears about death and dying.

Long-term depressive illness usually has its onset in the teen or young adult years — about 15% to 20% of American teens have experienced a serious episode of depression, which is similar to the proportion of adults suffering from teen depression.

Adolescent girls are twice as likely as boys to experience depression. Risk factors include stressful life events, particularly loss of a parent to death or divorce; child abuse; unstable care giving, poor social skills; chronic illness; and family history of depression.

Source : National Institutes of Health