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I think I'm depressed

Most young people feel sad, lonely or down at times. This is part of the normal ups and downs of life. But some young people feel low for long periods of time, which may affect their everyday lives and their ability to do what they always do.

 This is called depression.

How can I tell if I am experiencing depression?

When feelings of intense sadness, including feeling helpless, hopeless and worthless, last for many days or weeks and interfere with your social life, school life, work and/or family life, you may be suffering with depression.

Anyone suffering from depression will tell you, it’s not imaginary or “all in your head” and you can’t just “pull yourself together” or cheer up.

Where can I get help and support?

There's lots of help and support available if you think you are experiencing depression.

Understanding a bit more about depression, and how to manage it, may help you feel better and more in control. 

  • Find out more about depression on the Young Minds website
  • Take a simple quiz to see if you could be depressed
  • Watch a Youtube video about young people sharing their experiences. 

Talk to someone you know and trust

It's a good idea to speak to someone you know and trust about your feelings. This could be a friend, family member, teacher or mentor-person. It feels good to offload and the other person may offer you good advice, or help you find the right support.

If you feel it difficult to talk to some, that it's too hard to explain or that they won't understand or feel the same, The Young Minds website has some great tips to help.

Get professional support

If feeling sad, lonely or down becomes a big issue for you and you think you're suffering from depression, you may need professional help.

Off the Record offers a free, confidential support service for Merton residents, with online or face-to-face counselling options. If you are aged 14-18 years, you can get in touch with Off the Record directly by calling 020 8680 8899 or emailing

Otherwise, talk to someone at school or to your GP about making a referral to Merton's Child and Adolescent Mental Health Services (CAMHS).

CAMHS can offer support, or refer you to Off the Record for counselling.

Talk to someone at school or to your GP about making a referral to Merton's Child and Adolescent Mental Health Services (CAMHS).

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