A US study has found that many teens diagnosed with depression are missing follow up care, even when medication is prescribed or therapy is recommended.
Researchers at New York University found that within three months of diagnosis, over one third of approximately 4,400 teens with depression participating in the study did not receive any treatment. Over two thirds did not get a follow up evaluation with a specialist.
Fewer than half the teens on antidepressants did not receive any follow up care for the first three months.
“If things don’t get better through appropriate treatment and supports, things get worse,” said lead study author Briannon O’Connor.
“Untreated, adolescents are likely to develop worsening symptoms of both depression and other mental health problems, have increasing difficulties in school performance, withdraw from family and friends, and continue to have difficulties into adulthood,” he added.