Mental Health

Link – Black Teenagers Report Different Depression Symptoms Than White People, & It Affects How Their Mental Health Gets Treated

I’ve written before about how boys, in general, display depressive symptoms differently than girls. According to this study, there are also cultural differences between blacks and whites, and I would imagine that is true across many other groups as well:

Almost 800 Black teens between the ages of 11 and 21 who lived in public housing developments in the U.S. took the test — and the biggest signals of depression among them were complaints of interpersonal conflict (saying that they felt people “didn’t like them” or were “unfriendly”) and feelings of physical discomfort. This surprised researchers because the typical markers of depression are explicitly about sadness, from feelings of “lowness” to lack of interest in usual activities, but that wasn’t the case for these teens.

Depression is a complicated mix of symptoms, there is no “one” definition of how it will show up in any group, or any individual. We need to develop better tools and better treatments that include people who are dealing with depression, but aren’t showing sadness in traditional ways.

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