Doing Life Together

Doing Life Together

Could a Blood Test Tell You if Your Teen is Depressed?

It isn’t always easy to figure out whether a teen is simply in the throws of adolescent moodiness or is depressed. We have to rely on observing changes in behavior and looking for symptoms that fit depression.

Picking up on teen depression is important because it can lead to suicide, substance abuse, physical illness and more if untreated. Approximately, 25% of teens and young adults suffer from major depression.

A fascinating new study  involving teen depression was recently reported. The study was conducted at Northwestern University’s Feinberg School of Medicine. Eva Redei, co-author of the study has been working in a rat lab to find genetic markers for depression. Based on the work of her team, they were able to develop a test that looks for markers in the blood associated with teen depression. Specifically, the researchers found 26 biomarkers for major depression.


Twenty-eight teens participated in the study, ages 15 to 19; half of the teens were diagnosed with depression and half were not. The depressed teens shared 11 markers of depression.

This is the first time a blood test has been developed to diagnose depression. The researchers hope the blood test will help towards early identification of depression in teens so that treatment and prevention will be possible.  We’ve never had this before. And they also hope this discovery will take a bit of the stigma out of being diagnosed with depression.  Less stigma may mean more teens will seek treatment.

While this is exciting news, it doesn’t replace the need for a comprehensive evaluation by a competent mental health provider. The study also doesn’t address the bigger need to get at the underlying issues associated with depression. And since there are many different types of depression, it certainly doesn’t help depression that is brought on by lifestyle, relational and environmental issues. Truth is, you can have a predisposition to many conditions like depression, but it is the mix of genetics, environment and biology that matter.

The good news is that depression is very treatable. Look for the signs of teen depression and get help! My small booklet pictured above will help you understand depression from both a spiritual and psychological perspective. It includes signs, treatments and scripture to help.

Previous Posts

Repairing Family Relationships At the Holidays
The holidays are upon us and everyone has at least one family member they consider a little bit difficult. But what if the difficulty has created an uncomfortable distance that will be felt when you all sit down for the family meal or ...

posted 7:00:54am Nov. 30, 2015 | read full post »

Siblings: Help or Hurt Romantic Relationships?
I've heard my daughter say that having a brother has helped her understand men. She feels comfortable being around men her age, in part, due to being raised with a brother. We know from previous research that having opposite sex siblings ...

posted 7:00:20am Nov. 27, 2015 | read full post »

Thanksgiving: More Than a Meal, Parade and Football
When you think of Thanksgiving, what comes to mind? Watching the Macy's Day parade, eating a very large meal with all the trimmings and watching football with family and friends? Black Friday and the kickoff of the Christmas ...

posted 7:00:21am Nov. 25, 2015 | read full post »

Gratitude: How It Changes Us in Positive Ways
I've been keeping a gratitude journal for the past weeks. Each day, I write down 3 things for which I am thankful. Focusing on gratitude changes a person. If you want to know how, watch my blog to learn about the many benefits of ...

posted 7:00:39am Nov. 23, 2015 | read full post »

What's Your Relationship Deal Breaker?
My daughter was talking to us about relationships the other night. We asked about one young man she knew and her instant response was, "Too needy!" For her, that was a deal breaker. As I thought about this, we all have those deal breakers that ...

posted 7:00:06am Nov. 20, 2015 | read full post »


Report as Inappropriate

You are reporting this content because it violates the Terms of Service.

All reported content is logged for investigation.