By Trace Embry
Technological advances may be one reason teens are being misdiagnosed with depression. I’ll explain further about this in today’s post.
But first, be sure to follow up on today’s topic by reading additional posts pertaining to the ramifications of the over-use of technology and too many pleasure seeking activities.
Because of a little known condition known as anhedonia, teenagers today can’t go two minutes without engaging in some pleasurable activity without giving the appearance of being bored-to-death or depressed.
Why aren’t more mental health care professionals aware that teens are being misdiagnosed with depression due to this condition?
I’m guessing only one in twenty mental health professionals have even heard of anhedonia, much less have a remedy.
The reason is: anhedonia manifests symptoms similar to that of depression; yet, it’s not depression. Doctors are dispensing depression medications for it and exacerbating the problem! At Shepherds Hill Academy we get to see the problem reversed by virtue of what we do, i.e., remove technology everywhere except in the classrooms.
Anhedonia is covered more throughly in the following posts:
In addition, I recommend the following books and video:
– The Digital Invasion by Dr. Archibald Hart and Dr. Sylvia Hart Frejd – (I helped contribute to a portion of this book.)
– Captivated the Movie – (Shepherds Hill Academy Students and myself are featured in this video.)
A Not So Difficult Solution
The answer is not medication, but engaging the child in some form of critical, constructive, and/or creative thinking activity—preferably using his head, hands, feet and back. A crossword puzzle is better than nothing.
Anhedonia is a destruction of the pleasure center of the brain from over stimulation. Monitoring the amount of time your child plays video games or uses technology will help with some of this over stimulation.
The bottom line is this: because troubled teens are pleasuring themselves into imbecility, we must require our kids to engage in activities that require responsibilities and obligations rather than an endless flood of pleasurable and high energy excitement that comes with unlimited rights and privileges.
Are you noticing depression within your child? Try putting a limit on their technology use and see what happens.