These days’ people are more stressed than ever; stress of succeeding, unemployment, and long working hours, less pay, makeup and breakups. Now a days, feeling of depression is profound among young people especially age group of 12-24 years. What makes them easy target of depression and self harm? This age is followed by transition in physical, emotional and physiological ways. There is a robust increase of self harm and suicidal cases in young people now days. If teens decide to hurt themselves then there must be serious reasons that need to be looked into immediately.
Recent fad observed among teenagers was Blue whale challenge that made teenagers and young people their easy target. Hundreds of children who tried that game were made to go through life risking tasks and ended up giving up their lives.
WHAT MAKES YOUNG PEOPLE EASILY VULNERABLE?
Young minds are easily swayed by what interests them and especially those activities that make them look heroic and superior to others.
Cannot say ‘NO’ when dared:
Due to continuous turmoil in their heart, when someone dares them with some task, they could not resist and jump into anything without thinking about consequences.
Feeling of missing out (FOMO):
Today everyone has fear of missing out or left out. In order to fit in every where they accept challenges.
WHAT IS SELF HARM?
It is act of hurting and torturing oneself as punishment or out of sorrow. Adolescence is turbulent time for most children, where they are exposed to social comparisons, standing out from rest and finding their identity.
When they fail to do so, they find punishing and hurting themselves as best options. Feeling of hopelessness, self disappointment, broken families and depression are some of the reasons of self harm. Self hurting may include:
- Cutting themselves with razor blades
- Pulling hair
- Hitting themselves into wall
- Scratching and pinching
- Chocking and suffocating
Many of them express self harm as “Release of anger or emotions”. And others find it as a way to handle difficult situations, relieve emotional tension or as cry for help.
POSSIBLE REASONS & SYMPTOMS FOR DEPRESSION & SELF HARM
Many incidents in life like death of any close person, bad relations, broken families, pressure of studies or job makes one fell gloomy and stressed. Then what makes felling gloomy different from depression? When you feel sadness for prolonged period like not getting over death of someone or love relation, then you can define your stress as depression. In teenagers, being bullied can be a major reason behind depression. They find it difficult to share this with anyone out of shyness and shame.
1. Continuous state of depression or sadness:
Any close person’s death or separation from beloved ones can cause state of depression. One cuts himself from outside word and wants to spend time alone. In adolescents and children it may come out to be irritable or cranky.
2. Insomnia and Hypersomnia:
Insomnia means difficulty in falling asleep. A person cannot fall asleep easily or he may suffer from hypersomnia which means he sleeps in excess hours nearly everyday.
3. Everything looks unimportant:
Hanging out with friends and family are things of past, sitting alone in room seems to be the best option. One shows no interest in any activity or hobbies like drawing, sketching, dancing which earlier interests him.
4. No friends:
Some tragedies have adverse effect on your mind and heart that takes you away from every close person in your life; it can be your friends or family. You become reticent to share your feelings.
5. Difficulty in concentrating:
Depressed person’s memory and concentration is affected. He finds it difficult to pay attention on one thing. Continuous flowing thoughts in mind make it difficult to focus. He is so lost in his deep thought that he forgets to participate or respond.
PARENTING TIPS TO DEAL WITH IT?
1. Act as a friend to your children:
Talking to your children like a friend can really help. It will help you get to know about what’s going on in their mind and have closer look to their day to day problems.
2. Open up:
Have open conversation with children at home and schools on topics like child bullying, cyber crime, depression and other sensitive issues that may effects them.
3. Show that you care and understand:
Don’t over react to any situation. Try to be calm and just listen to them.
4. Educate them:
School and parents should educate them about the safety measures and teach them to say “NO’ to any pressure.