According to a survey, suicide is rated as the third main cause of deaths among adolescents. Parents as well as experts are highly concerned about this and experts advise parents, teachers to acquire as much knowledge as possible about teen depression and teen suicides so that these dangers can be averted. In fact, a number of myths remain about teen depression and suicides. The intention of this article is to dispel these myths so as to help people intervene at the right time.
Myth #1 – There may not be any warning signs before teen suicides
The fact is that there may be symptoms or behaviors that can easily be observed before serious problems occur. Experts have found out that teen depression is one of the most serious risk factors that may lead to suicidal behaviors in adolescents. Agitated and angry outbursts that occur frequently may be one of the symptoms of teen depression. Other symptoms may be anxiety disorders, mood swings, use of drugs or excessive drinking, keeping away from friends, etc. If the affected teens lead stressful lives and experience family conflicts, they may also result in increased suicidal tendencies.
Myth #2 – It is better not to discuss about suicidal thoughts with young people with teen depression
Many people have the notion that if they discuss suicidal thoughts with their teens, they will be planting the idea into their minds. But a study says that not discussing suicidal ideation may be more dangerous and risky than discussing about it.
Myth #3 – If teens have had failed suicide attempts earlier, they may not try them again and even if it looks like they may try, they are doing so to grab the attention of others.
This notion is wrong because earlier attempts indicate that these teens are at great risks. The risks should not be ignored or brushed aside.
Myth # 4 – Coverage in the media about completed suicides or about attempts may not impact the suicidal behaviors of young people.
In fact, media coverage about suicide stories has increased the incidence of suicides among young people. It appears that these young people are impressed and get emboldened by the dramatized coverage of these stories.
Myth #5 – Medications taken for teen depression may induce suicidal tendencies in adolescents
This notion is wrong though there are many controversies shrouding this. A number of researchers have ruled that medications are prescribed with an intention to cure the problem of depression and so, they do not induce suicidal tendencies in teens.
Myth #6 – Once people and especially teens make up their minds to commit suicide, they cannot be stopped.
There are effective interventions that can be adopted for preventing these teens from attempting suicides. Interventions that are beneficial are education by physicians and another education known as gatekeeper education. In gatekeeper education, these young people will not be allowed access to the lethal methods that are used for committing suicide.
Myth #7 – Professionals alone can identify suicidal tendencies in children.
The fact is that parents, teachers, relatives and care-givers can identify the changes in teens that may be indications of their suicidal tendencies. In fact, young people who have been seriously affected by teen depression face more risks.
Changes in eating habits, serious disturbances in sleeping patterns, withdrawal symptoms, violent behaviors, use of drugs or alcohol, reluctance to attend schools, not participating in activities including fun activities can be symptoms of teen depression and if these conditions are quite severe, there may be suicidal tendencies in these young people.