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Too much happiness may mean depression

Psychologist Neha Patel who helps explain why teens commit crimes for new TV show, reveals why a behavioural balance is the need of the hour.

health and fitness Updated: Mar 16, 2012 15:49 IST
Serena Menon
adolescents

What is it that pushes adolescents to commit heinous crimes is a question that most people ponder over. Many feel it is their upbringing and the company they keep that eventually leads kids to attempting stealing, kidnapping, hurting themselves or others and even committing murder. Clinical psychologist Neha Patel agrees. She also feels that there are signs that can be looked out for, so that children exhibiting certain behaviour can be helped.

Calling the recent Bollywood film Shaitan (2011) a good example of how young people get involved in criminal activities, she explains, “Murders happen, but they are not cold-blooded moves. In Shaitan, a group of youngsters get embroiled in the crime because they make one mistake and are then afraid of coming out. Children should not be scared to come clean to their parents.”

The expert, who currently shares her comments on the teen crime-based show Gumrah that airs on Channel V and addresses the abovementioned question, has also noticed an increase in the number of parents worried about their children having anxiety issues. Insisting that depression is one of the most common ills plaguing modern society, she says, “Most people can’t tell whether they are depressed or not. For instance, too much happiness can be a sign of depression. So can too much sadness. A balance is most important; neither can the guardians be too permissive nor too strict. A comfortable environment at home is essential.”

Parents should look out for
1. Mood swings and excessive anger
2. If the child is being overtly secretive
3. If kids want their room doors closed more often
4. Talking too much on the phone
5. Chewing gum can mean drug or alcohol addiction
6. Sleeping really late

Spotting depression is tough, here’s how
1. Sudden change in lifestyle, start going out too much or stay at home too often
2. Inexplicable happiness
3. Lack of reactions and general disinterest
4. Promiscuous activities
5. Extreme weight loss or gain
6. Hopping friends circles