Today, we’ve learned of the sad news that Lee Thompson Young, the former Disney star of the show The Famous Jett Jackson, died from an apparent suicide. TMZ reported that the 29-year old did not appear for work at the TNT show where he currently stars in, “Rizzoli & Isles”. Staffers asked his landlord to check up on the actor. The landlord discovered Young’s body. He was also known for his role as running back Chris Comer in the movie Friday Nights Lights.
This news comes a week after a former The Bachelor finalist Gia Allemand died from an apparent suicide attempt. These tragic events are painful reminders of the importance of mental health awareness. Parents too must be vigilant in spotting it in their children and teens. While there are a variety of disorders, and other issues that could lead to suicide, Depression is a common factor. Here are some things HelpGuide.Org assembled on signs of depression in teens:
The negative effects of teenage depression go far beyond a melancholy mood. Many rebellious and unhealthy behaviors or attitudes in teenagers are actually indications of depression. The following are some the ways in which teens “act out” or “act in” in an attempt to cope with their emotional pain:
- Problems at school. Depression can cause low energy and concentration difficulties. At school, this may lead to poor attendance, a drop in grades, or frustration with schoolwork in a formerly good student.
- Running away. Many depressed teens run away from home or talk about running away. Such attempts are usually a cry for help.
- Drug and alcohol abuse. Teens may use alcohol or drugs in an attempt to “self-medicate” their depression. Unfortunately, substance abuse only makes things worse.
- Low self-esteem. Depression can trigger and intensify feelings of ugliness, shame, failure, and unworthiness.
- Internet addiction. Teens may go online to escape their problems, but excessive computer use only increases their isolation, making them more depressed.
- Reckless behavior. Depressed teens may engage in dangerous or high-risk behaviors, such as reckless driving, out-of-control drinking, and unsafe sex.
- Violence. Some depressed teens—usually boys who are the victims of bullying—become violent. As in the case of the Columbine and Newtown school massacres, self-hatred and a wish to die can erupt into violence and homicidal rage.
- Teen depression is also associated with a number of other mental health problems, including eating disorders and self-injury.
Check out the site for other information, suggestion, resources and guidance. We shouldn’t lose more young people who suffer in silence and are not given opportunity to get treatment.