What's the Big Deal About Anxiety and Depression in Students?

When a person thinks of a student that has anxiety, that person is probably thinking that they have a test that day or that they have a homework assignment that was due that they forgot about.

Maybe when that person thinks of a student that has depression, that person is probably thinking that they didn’t get a good grade on a test that they studied all night for or didn’t make a school team for an activity. That is barely scratching the surface of students with anxiety and depression. A lot of the time, anxiety and depression are overlooked constantly when they should be dealt with properly. There is a lot we don’t know about the two subjects, and a lot we can do to help. Here are some facts about the two, causes, signs of someone suffering and how to can help.

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Depression is a tricky and complex thing, like the human mind, but there evidence to help understand it more. Depression has been on the rise since 2012, so six years (that’s 2,185.5 days!). In 2015, about 3 million teens from ages 12-17 had a depressive episode, according to the Department of Health and Human Services. Other times, people have depressive episodes that can take place for days, weeks or months. More than 2 million people report experiencing depression that impacts their daily functions.

What’s really upsetting is that only about 20% of kids confess having depression and the other portion hide it, usually because they feel ashamed (there is absolutely nothing to be ashamed about by the way) or believe that they can get over it by themselves. Depression is also more common in females than males because girls have more of a tendency to overanalyze certain situations. Most of Depression reasons can includefriends, boyfriends, being called names (ugly, fat, gross, weird, etc.) and more. Anxiety is like that too, but not completely. Anxiety and Depression aren’t the same, but they have multiple things in common.

For example, females are more likely to have major anxiety than males. About 30% of girls and 20% of boys–totaling 6.3 million teens–have had an anxiety disorder, according to data from the National Institute of Mental Health. Also like Depression, Anxiety is something that teens feel ashamed of having so they don’t speak up when they really should. A 2015 report from the Child Mind Institute found that only about 20% of young people with a diagnosable Anxiety disorder get treatment. Even if anxiety is a diagnosable disorder, it does not make a person crazy.

Anxiety and Depression don’t just appear instantly, many things cause them to grow in the mind. Anxiety occurs in teens in two main places; in school and out of school, like a job, home, an activity. In school, the most common reason for anxiety is bullying. This could be physical abuse, mental abuse and/or emotional abuse. Anxiety can also be caused by not getting enough sleep, peer and social pressures, teachers and overscheduling.

Students can also be anxious at home, especially if they have an abusive parent/s. Some parents mentally or physically abuse their children, which brings major stress and anxiety into the child’s life. Teens are also growing, so they have hormonal shifts and mood swings. The hormonal shifts cause acne for both genders, and periods for females. Acne is a big thing that people are anxious about because they fear being made fun of.

Acne is a natural thing that all students experience at one point in their middle/high school journey. Friends are also a major thing in a person’s life, especially for students. Friends are like a safety net when a student is going through a hard time or need some advice, but getting into a fight with them, it’s like an entire box of anxiety explodes. Just apologize right away to avoid any kinds of anxiety attacks. Depression in school is serious, because it is very common, and can lead to suicide. Students can become depressed in school by persistent bullying, dropping grades and relationships.

Bullying is one of the many reasons that suicide occurs. Jerald Kay, M.D., Professor and Chair of the Department of Psychiatry at the Wright State University School of Medicine says in the past 15 years, depression has doubled and suicide tripled. Also, when a grade drops from an A to something like a C, a student can think they aren’t smart and they won’t be able to bring it up, so they accept defeat and the rest of their grades plummet. They can then believe they are a failure and give up completely.

Relationships also have an impact with Depression. When a couple breaks up, either both parties are miserable, or one is miserable. Unhealthy relationships also have a strain on a person. If there is verbal/physical/mental/emotional abuse, the other might not know what to do. Bad friendships can also put a strain on a person. Bad friends tend to talk behind that person’s back, make fun of them, tell other people their secrets, or blackmail them.

It’s hard to know when someone is depressed or has anxiety, but there are a few ways to tell. It is difficult to tell if someone has major anxiety, but there are clear signs to look out for; grades suddenly dropping, difficulty sleeping, difficulty focusing/concentrating, appetite change, and the big one, self harm. Self harm is seriously overlooked, because when someone cuts their wrist and someone else notices, they just say it was their cat or their dog. It’s just a scrape. A national study reported that up to 23 percent of girls self-injure, which can include cutting or burning skin; scratching to the point of bleeding; picking; and even embedding small objects into the flesh. There are also a few ways to see if someone has Depression, for example, there is irritability, fatigue, difference in activities or likings, appetite change, and self harm or suicidal thoughts.

A lot of the time these symptoms go unnoticed or considered hormonal changes, but really it’s a sign that they need help but don’t know how to get it. When a friend suffers from depression, support and encouragement can play an important role in their recovery. Help them to cope with depressive symptoms, overcome negative thoughts, and regain their energy, optimism, and enjoyment of life. There are things to say to them, and things not to say, according to The Depression and Bipolar Support Alliance. To help, say something like,” You are not alone in this. I’m here for you.

” “You are important to me. Your life is important to me.” “Tell me what I can do now to help”. Things to look out for while talking to someone with Depression are, “It’s all in your head.” “Look on the bright side.

” “Just snap out of it.” “What’s wrong with you?” It’s important to just listen, don’t relate to what is happening to them because there is a very small chance that they have the same problems. The same thing occurs with anxiety. Anxiety disorder doesn’t mean the person is mentally inferior or deficient, so don’t view them as such. Instead of judging them, encourage them to seek professional help.

Anxiety disorder is caused by unhealthy behavior. While self-help information can be beneficial, a professional Anxiety disorder counsellor/therapist is almost always required to overcome problematic anxiety because many of these behaviors are invisible, and therefore, unknown to the sufferer. Be patient, be available, and be supporting. If they show signs of possible suicidal thoughts, talk to a guardian or teacher about it immediately, because waiting too long could be the biggest mistake. Anxiety and Depression are two very serious things that should be taken more seriously.

There are many ways to tell if someone is suffering from the symptoms provided, and ways to help that person out. Don’t let these people go along feeling the way they feel. Help! Recommend a therapist or a counselor to them. Hopefully, the more that this problem is heard about, the less it will be a problem.