EASTON, Md.- Experts say depression and suicide occur more often in teenagers than one might think.
"Suicide among kids is one of the highest causes of death," said Dr. James Kelly, who has worked as a child psychiatrist in Easton for 25 years. He said recognizing that a teen is suffering from depression is the first step in the right direction.
"Things that we see when someone is really depressed are things that we call neurovegetative symptoms," Kelly said. According to Kelly, some of those symptoms include changes in appetite, changes in sleeping patterns, as well as becoming irritable, angry and withdrawn.
"They can lose or gain weight, and they often have difficulty relating to people even more than if they had difficulty before," Kelly said. He explained that communicating with a child is an important way help him or her deal with depression and prevent suicide.
"That's probably the most important thing," Kelly said. "Depression isn't something that just starts rapidly. It's not like getting a cold, so the kids today often have very little time with their parents."
Kelly advises parents to talk to ther children every day. He said just a few minutes a day could make a world of difference.