This theoretical study reviewed 170 empirical studies on adolescent mental health to understand how adolescents were identified as having depression and how the validity of those assessments was determined. Four themes were extracted from this literature review for analysis: depression; depression and anxiety; depression, anxiety, and eating disorders; and assessment of depression. The data analysis revealed that adolescent depression is not being identified because, too often, mental health professionals and frontline social workers are underutilizing assessment tools available to them, lack the skills to assess depression, or both. Additionally, the data analysis showed that some depression assessments, such as the brief questionnaires, do not capture certain nuances of depression; however, those assessments are still able to identify depression if provided to adolescents. The findings indicated that providing adolescents the opportunity to take a depression assessment could decrease the rate of unidentified depression among adolescents and could decrease the rate of future implications of undiagnosed depression in today’s and future populations.
Dr. Russell-Rodriguez earned her accredited doctoral degree in Clinical Psychology from California Southern University (USA). Dr. Pardo is an Honorary Professor (PRC) and works as an Adjunct Professor for several universities specialising in doctoral research supervision. Both are practitioners dedicated to helping others.
Nadira T. Pardo
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Depression, Adolescent, assessment, identification, treatment
PSYCHOLOGY & PSYCHIATRY / General