According to CHADS Coalition for Mental Health (Communities Healing Adolescent Depression and Suicide), the following are signs and symptoms of depression:
•Depressed mood (can be sad, down, grouchy or irritable).
•Change in sleeping patterns (too much, too little or disturbed).
•Change in weight or appetite (decreased or increased).
•Speaking and/or moving with unusual speed or slowness.
•Loss of interest or pleasure in usual activities.
•Withdrawal from family and friends.
•Feelings of worthlessness, self-reproach or guilt.
•Feelings of hopelessness or desperation.
•Diminished ability to think or concentrate, slowed thinking or indecisiveness.
•Thoughts of death, suicide or wishes to be dead.
•Extreme anxiety, agitation or enraged behavior.
•Excessive drug and/or alcohol use or abuse.
Signs, Symptoms of Bipolar Disorder
•Inflated self-esteem or feelings of superiority.
•Decreased need for sleep without tiredness or fatigue.
•Increased talkativeness or inability to stop talking.
•Racing thoughts or thoughts seeming disconnected.
•Being easily distracted from whatever is going on.
•Becoming increasingly focused on completing goals, like writing a paper in one night or staying up all night cleaning.
•Becoming excessively involved in activities that are pleasurable but have a high potential for painful consequences, such as excessive risk-taking, sexual activity, gambling, etc.
Warning Signs and Risk Factors of Suicide
•Strong feelings of hopelessness.
•Drug and/or alcohol abuse.
•Access to guns.
•Strong feelings of wanting to be dead.
•A previous suicide attempt.
•Demonstrating behaviors suicidal thoughts such as talking or writing about death or suicide.
•Giving away possessions.
•Serious behavior or conduct problems.
•Sense of worthlessness or burdensomeness.
•Having a history of depression or bipolar disorder.
Ways to Act
•Acknowledge that you are seeing signs of depression, self-injury or suicide in a friend and that it is serious.
•Let your friend know that you care about him or her and that he or she needs help you cannot provide.
•Tell a trusted adult, either with your friend or on his or her behalf.
•Crider Health Center: 636-583-1800.
•Grace’s Place: 636-388-6509.
•National Council on Alcohol and Drug Abuse: 636-239-8724.
•Preferred Family Healthcare: 636-584-8724.
•NAMI (National Alliance for the Mentally Ill): 636-940-7440.
•Catholic Family Services: 636-583-1800.
•Lutheran Family Services: 1-866-326-5327.
•St. Clair Ministerial Alliance: Call a local church.
•National Suicide Prevention Lifeline: 1-800-273-TALK (8255).
•Trevor Project for LGBTQ youth: 1-866-4-U-TREVOR.
•St. Louis County Youth Connection hotline: 314-628-2929 or 1-877-928-2929 or text 4HLP to 31658.
•KUTO Crisis Line: 1-800-644-KUTO (5886).
•CHADS family support: 314-952-8274.
Websites for Support and Information