Teen Depression Increases the Risk of Violent Behavior Down the Road

teen depression

Teen Depression Increases the Risk of Violent Behavior Down the Road

Untreated teen depression is a destructive force. If allowed to run rampant through a youth’s mind, it can cause issues in school and at home, it can make daily life feel nearly impossible, and it can follow that individual into adulthood.

New research is showing that teen depression goes a step further than all of that, though. It also seems to increase a teen’s risk of violent behavior in the future. This new study shows the importance of treating teen depression and other mental health issues sooner rather than later.

How teen depression can increase the risk of violence

In a study published in the Journal of the American Academy of CHild and Adolescent Psychiatry, researchers found a link between teen depression and risk of violent behavior later.

teen depressionIt’s not unusual for adolescents in juvenile detention and correctional centers to struggle with depression–over 1 in 10 boys and nearly 1 in 3 girls have depression in those facilities. But it’s been unclear whether the depression came before or after the violent behavior, but this study has delved into that very question.

The researchers found that depression was a predictor for later violent behavior–especially if the symptoms increased over time. They believe that beyond violence, teen depression could also increase hostility, poor self-regulation, and impulsivity–but more research needs to be done to clarify those links.

Professor Seena Fazel, the lead researchers, explained why this study is important:

“This research is important for two main reasons. First, it adds to the evidence of the many potential harms of untreated depression in young people. Second, it suggests that closer liaison between criminal justice and mental health might prevent violence in high-risk individuals.”

This study just highlights the pressing need for earlier and better interventions for youth mental health issues. It’s clear that letting these issues slide under the radar and fester only leads to serious problems–such as criminal behavior–down the road.

If you believe your son or daughter is struggling with a mental health issue, it’s critical for you to reach out to a professional for guidance as soon as possible.

ViewPoint is here for your family

ViewPoint Center is an assessment center for teens, ages 12 to 17. At ViewPoint Center, we provide treatment through superior assessment, diagnosis, treatment, and stabilization–all in a personalized environment for your child in crisis. We strive to provide the best help for troubled teens through the most efficient and effective methods available. Our goal is to help your child through this hard time.  

Before ViewPoint, families are often frustrated and lost. Varying doctors and therapists with a range of advice, diagnoses, and plans leaves parents and children unsure of where to turn. At ViewPoint, we centralize all of the different diagnoses, and create a comprehensive report for you and your family to get back on track. Let us help you.

For more information about how we treat teen depression at ViewPoint Center, contact us today at 801-825-5222.


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