According to the World Health Organization (WHO), depression is a common illness worldwide, with an estimated 350 million people affected. Depression is caused by a combination of biological, genetic, environmental, and psychological factors. It can impair an individual’s ability to cope with daily life and to function at school or at work. Children or adolescents who have depression may show signs that are a little different from the symptoms typically exhibited by adults with depression. They may refuse to go to school, sulk, or complain of feeling sick. They may get in trouble at school, be negative or grouchy, feel misunderstood, or have an irritable mood. According to the National Comorbidity Survey Adolescent Supplement (NCS-A), about 11% of adolescents have a depressive disorder by age 18.

What are the common symptoms of depression?

  • Sadness

  • Loss of interest in daily activities

  • Significant weight loss when not dieting, or significant weight gain

  • Inability to sleep or sleeping too much

  • Psychomotor agitation or retardation

  • Fatigue

  • Feelings of worthlessness or excessive or inappropriate guilt

  • Diminished ability to think or concentrate, or indecisiveness

  • Recurrent thoughts of death, recurrent suicidal ideation without a specific plan, or a specific plan for committing suicide or a suicide attempt

Treatment for children and adolescents with depression in Philadelphia:

Dr. Braunstein offers supportive, evidence-based therapy for children and adolescents with depression, tailored to their specific needs and preferences. Contact Dr. Braunstein to schedule an initial visit at her office in Center City Philadelphia.

Helpful external resources for depression:

If you or someone you know is in crisis or thinking of committing suicide, get help quickly. Please call 9-1-1 for emergency services, or go to the nearest emergency room. You may also call the toll-free 24-hour hotline of the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at1-800-273-TALK (1-800-273-8255).

Anxiety and Depression Association of America - depression

Depression and Bipolar Disorder Support Alliance - depression

National Institute of Mental Health - depression

National Suicide Prevention Lifeline - depression