What Does Gender Have to do with Teen Depression?

Teen depression ranks among the fastest growing and the most threatening problems we all face. Though there are certain experts who opine that gender plays a role in this problem, it is yet to be categorically established. As of now, this problem affects teens of both the genders more or less equally. Even other factors like social status, family income, race, educational background, achievements, etc. do not seem to have any role in this problem.

Unfortunately, parents of young people who have been affected by teen depression mistake the signs and symptoms as normal behaviors of children of their age. But, only when serious problems erupt, they start realizing that they have committed a grave mistake and have ignored the signs or mistaken the symptoms as normal behaviors. Some of the worst affected teens may resort even to suicide and hence, parents should keep a close watch on these teens and provide them with the right treatments.

Effects Of Teen Depression

Teen Girls

If girls have been affected by teen depression and if they indulge in risky and unprotected sexual activities, they are likely to get pregnant. This phenomenon has been on the increase in some of the highly developed countries. Further, they may be affected by sexually-transmitted diseases or infections also. Due to this, the parents and other members of their families undergo a lot of mental stress.

Physical Illnesses

Irrespective of their gender, both teenage boys and girls become susceptible to be affected by physical illnesses if they have the problem of teen depression.


Teens who have been affected by depression may take to drinking and drug addiction. So, parents should keep a watchful eye on them and should avoid giving them more money than what is needed. They should also watch their movements and know their friends. If they find that they are having contacts with unusual and abnormal people, they should immediately intervene and try to put a stop to such friendships.


Young people affected by teen depression may always look sad and they may not bother to look neat and tidy. They may not even worry about following hygienic habits like washing their hands, taking regular bath. All these symptoms are common both for girls and boys. Since researches have not yet established the links between gender and teen depression, parents should play their roles more responsibly and take timely action for rescuing their children from this serious problem.

Seeking Support

But, results of certain other studies have revealed that girls are more ready to seek support for combating this problem than boys. This may be due to the production of a hormone called Oxytocin in their body that counters the secretion of Cortisol. Oxytocin is capable of promoting bonding as well as relaxing emotions. Males do not produce as much Oxytocin as females do. So, they try to be on their own.

Boys affected by teen depression are less likely to communicate about it than girls. As far as self-esteem is concerned, the self-esteem of females is dependent upon adequacy or otherwise of their relationships but, in the case of boys, it is dependent upon adequacy or otherwise of their performance. So, females are more likely to seek support than males.

So, parents of young boys and girls who have been affected by teen depression should communicate with their young ones appropriately, support them, teach them coping skills and give them suitable treatments so that they can be cured of this problem.

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