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Warning Signs Your Teen Might Be Depressed

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Almost every teen goes through difficult periods of adjustment as they make the transition from childhood to adulthood. For parents, one of the biggest challenges during this period is sorting out normal “teenage angst” from more serious problems like depression. To help, here’s a basic guide explaining what you need to know.

What causes depression?

For any person, clinical depression is a serious issue that affects every area of life. There is often no single cause for depression, but contributing factors include:

  • Hormonal changes
  • Inherited traits
  • Trauma
  • Brain chemistry changes
  • Presence of other mental health problems
  • Learning disabilities
  • Bullying
  • Academic performance difficulties

When depression is not treated promptly, it can lead to significant complications. Untreated depression drives people into relationship conflicts, alcohol abuse, academic and work performance issues, and in worst cases, self-harm and attempted suicide.

For teens, depression can be especially devastating since they lack the life experience and emotional maturity to help them recognize and deal with their emotions. Depression is a serious issue, and depression among teens has grown exponentially in the social media age.

What symptoms indicate my teen might be depressed?

There are a number of symptoms which could indicate depression, and it’s important to be familiar with them. Here are some of the most important:

  • Difficulty concentrating
  • Lack of energy
  • Hopelessness
  • Irritability or anger
  • Increased isolation
  • Fatigue or weakness
  • Constant aches and pains
  • Lack of interest in things they enjoyed previously
  • Persistent negative thinking
  • Persistent sadness
  • Oversensitivity to criticism
  • Thoughts or talk of death and suicide
  • Substance abuse

All of the above symptoms can be a normal part of the healthy teenage experience. As teens move from childhood into the responsibilities and complexities of adult life, they may naturally find themselves feeling sad, fatigued, hopeless, or overly sensitive.

And the fact that they are currently undergoing physiological changes in their growing bodies doesn’t make things any easier for them. The key for parents is noticing when these symptoms move from normal to concerning. 

When are these symptoms most serious?

Parents should consider the duration of the symptoms, how intense they are, and which areas of life they affect. Reflecting on symptoms in light of these areas can help parents decide whether their teen is experiencing normal growing pains or something else — and whether they should seek help for their child in depression treatment centers for teenagers.

Area of life: It is quite normal for teens to express frustration, impatience, and anger at their family or toward others they feel they can confide in, yet reign all that in when around their friends or those they admire. They may be willing to let their family see how sad they are but they put up a more positive front around classmates.

If these feelings and outbursts are starting to spill out into every area of life, this means your teen is struggling much more to control their sadness or anger. It is pervading their life and making it increasingly difficult to function.

Intensity: Teens will experience nearly all the symptoms listed above at some point, usually in thoughts that come and go. For parents, this can seem frustrating as it may be hard to predict a teen’s mood from day to day.

When the sad or negative feelings become chronic, even if they are mild, then parents should be concerned. This can quickly progress from mild, chronic sadness to feelings so intense the teen may be unable to get out of bed or may have suicidal ideations.

Duration: The final area of concern is how long symptoms have persisted. If a teen is sad or angry one day followed by several good days, this is likely nothing to be concerned about. If the breaks seem to be getting shorter, or if the bad mood persists for two weeks or more, it is possible that the teen is suffering from depression and needs professional help.

If you suspect your teenager is experiencing something more than normal teenage emotional upheaval, don’t hesitate to get them professional help. The vast majority of people who get help for depression respond well and recover.

Hey all! Big thanks to Katy Blevins for handing over the reins to me at the end of 2017 to fulfill my new years resolution to write...often! Based in Miami, you can find me blogging about family life as a mother of two young kids. But i'll also continue the Chaos and Kiddos theme of business, fashion, parenting, product reviews, and...well, I could go on and on.

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Family

How PRAMA is Making Exercise a Family Affair

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Technology is changing the world around us, and sometimes this can be detrimental to our family’s health. Think of how difficult it can be to drag your child away from the TV or tablet and get them to engage with the family or exercise outside.

It’s no wonder we’re starting to see an increase in child obesity and other related health problems. But the gym flooring experts at PAVIGYM are trying to change that. Drawing on their years of experience in specialised, high quality gym flooring, they have incorporated the most advanced technology in order to create a family exercise experience like no other – the PRAMA system.

The aim is to get families working out together, and the state of the art technology makes each session so immersive it becomes an experience, not just another workout.

How does the PRAMA system work?

PRAMA is an interactive workout system that incorporates modern technology into the floors and walls, combined with music and fun fitness programs to make a truly immersive experience. It’s the first of its kind, and the aim is to bring a real sense of fun into exercise, while setting challenges for participants in order to help get them fitter and stronger and meet their fitness goals.

It’s highly intelligent, using smart software and LED lighting and sensors to turn the room into a giant arcade game. There are hundreds of training modes, games, and circuits built in to cater for free training, group training, partner training and challenges.What’s more, it’s completely adaptable to all ages and levels of fitness.

The specialist kids and family programme is changing how we think about fitness

Fit and healthy children make for fit and healthy adults. If we can instill a sense of how important to our health fitness is at a younger age, then there’s a good chance we will carry that into adulthood. This is where PRAMA steps in.

Already available at locations in London such as David Lloyd, the family fitness programmes that come as part of the installation of the PRAMA fitness system are going down a storm.

It’s effectively disguising fitness as fun. Being a big game all the family can take part in, both together with the adults or as a separate kids-only session, it’s unique in the industry.

The benefits are huge. Training cognitive and motor skills is known to promote brain function in an academic capacity, as well as offering the obvious physical benefits. It can help manage obesity, ADHD, and depression. It has an important social aspect, given that healthy competition can help build self esteem and teamwork. And of course, it’s a chance for families to spend time together – away from electronic screens.

The adaptable programmes ensure it really is suitable for any age and ability, and make it possible for multiple generations to get involved. Fitness is important for the whole family, regardless of age.

Technology is the answer, not the problem

By embedding smart technology into the PRAMA system, PAVIGYM are revolutionising fitness. This new way of working out lets users view the results of their sessions online and monitor their progress over time. It’s a great way to reach new audiences and build up a member base by offering a unique system that really makes your gym stand out from the crowd.

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Family

3 Reasons to Keep Old Family Photos

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The decision of whether or not to hang onto family keepsakes is often an emotional one. We can be torn between the need to declutter and the guilt of getting rid of memories. And in the case of family photos, this decision is even harder. After all, they are things you can never replace once they’re gone. For that reason and many more, most people decide to keep them and just find creative ways to store them. But in case you’re still on the fence, here are just a few good reasons not to throw them away.

Old family photos preserve history

The first photograph was taken in 1826 or 1827 by a man in France. It was created using a method he was experimenting with, called heliography. At this point and for many years after, all photos were produced on tin plates. But what’s amazing to realize is that before this, the only images of our ancestors would be pictures people drew. This was a rare skill usually reserved for people of royalty and wealth.

While your family photos might not date back that far, the history of the photograph is still pretty valuable. Without them, we wouldn’t have the clear view of events, trends, and history we do today. Old photos can give us a glimpse into other eras and help us discover what people wore, drove, and ate. But aside from that, these pictures tell your history, which is something that can be passed down to the next generations.

There are many convenient ways to store old photos

Lack of storage space is why many people choose to dispose of keepsakes, clutter, and old photos. But with today’s technology, there’s no need to worry about that. With the development of cloud photo storage, you can easily upload thousands of images to access any time and from anywhere you want. This also makes it easy to share your photos with family members through email or other methods. You can also print any out that you wish by uploading them to a local or mail-in photo lab.

But if you’d rather not destroy the originals, you can also purchase organizers for your prints. Many photo supply stores sell storage systems, such as sectioned boxes, acid-free albums, or plastic files where you can neatly stack and sort the prints for compact storage in small spaces. Of course, even if you do choose to keep the physical copies, it’s still a good idea to scan them into a cloud-based system for back up.

Old photos make great artwork

If you have any open spaces you’d like to decorate, old family photos are a great solution. You can have them professionally enlarged and framed, or you can have them made into canvas prints. Canvas prints are perfect for spots over the fireplace or large walls that you can’t quite seem to fill, but they’re also much cheaper than framed and matted prints or expensive artwork you might purchase from a local vendor. The statement they make is much more personal and elegant than any piece of art you can buy.

If you’re fortunate enough to still have a piece of your family’s history preserved through old photos, don’t take it for granted. Some people never have the chance to see these types of images because their photos were lost or destroyed. Take the time to preserve these memories to pass down to your children. They’re an important part of your past and your family should be able to cherish for generations to come.

 

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Family

Why The Collaborative Process is Right for You

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When you and your partner are choosing to go separate ways, there are several routes you can take towards your divorce. One of these paths is the collaborative process. Many couples have already found resolution this way and it might be right for you. Let’s take a look at some of the reasons why.

No Court Deadline

If you have to take your divorce proceedings to court, it will be dictated by the court entirely. You will be told when your heading will be and you are expected to make sure you are there for it. If you cannot show, it might look bad to the court and you might not get everything you want from the process.

Choosing to work with collaborative family lawyers means that you can set the meetings around your schedule. This could be very helpful if you both have busy work lives or children you need to find a sitter for.

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A Relaxed Environment

While a divorce is never going to be the easiest process, choosing to work towards it collaboratively is one of the best ways to make it slightly easier for all. You have both decided that you want to work towards this together and this is a positive process you have chosen.

While it will probably take place in the office of one of your lawyers, it could also be scheduled for somewhere neutral to make the process as easy as possible. Your lawyers will speak to each other before the first meeting about the best place for you all to meet.

Truly Collaborative

The main people in the room are you, your partner, and your lawyers. Other experts might be brought in, such as a family consultant to offer guidance on how to talk to your children about the divorce, but at the end of the day it is just the four of you working together.

There is an end goal in mind and a desire to not let the proceedings go to court, so you should find it much easier to work together instead of trying to battle it out in some other way. You might even be able to sort out complicated matters like finances and childcare arrangements through actively sitting down and trying to work things out.

You will both have your lawyers on hand to discuss how to move forward with proceedings. There is no reason why a divorce cannot be a positive experience for both parties. Sometimes, there is no bad reason why a marriage has ended. Instead, you can both work together to ensure that your futures are as good as the years you spent together.

Not for Everyone

A collaborative divorce is not always the best option for some partners but it can be a cathartic process for others. If you and your partner are going your separate ways amicably, consider a collaborative process. It might be the best way for you to sort out the legal technicalities of your divorce without major disruption to your everyday life.

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