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Health Raps: Depression

Sure, everybody feels sad or blue now and then. But if you're sad most of the time, and it's giving you problems with your grades or attendance at school your relationships with your family and friends alcohol, drugs, or sex controlling your behavior in other ways.  The problem may be depression.

How You Can Tell?

Here's how to tell if you or a friend might be depressed.

First, there are two kinds of depressive illness: the sad kind, called major depression, and manic-depression or bipolar disorder, when feeling down and depressed alternates with being speeded-up and sometimes reckless.

You should talk with someone and ask for help if you've had five or more of the following symptoms for more than two weeks or if any of these symptoms cause such a big change that you can't keep up your usual routine.....

When You're Depressed...

When You're Manic...

Talk to Someone

If you are concerned about depression in yourself or a friend, talk to someone about it. There are people who can help you get treatment:

Why Do People Get Depressed?

Sometimes people get seriously depressed after something like a divorce in the family, major financial problems, someone you love dying, a messed up home life, or breaking up with a boyfriend or girlfriend.

Other times - like with other illnesses - depression just happens. Often teenagers react to the pain of depression by getting into trouble: trouble with alcohol, drugs, or sex; trouble with school or bad grades; problems with family or friends. This is another reason why it's important to get treatment for depression before it leads to other trouble.

Depression is a real medical illness, and it's treatable.

"Health Raps: Depression" was produced in September of 2004. For the most recently updated health information, consult a physician and visit