Researchers at The University of Texas, Arlington, claim that a quick and simple paper test called 'CES-DC' is the most reliable way to determine whether a teenager should be referred for mental health support. The test that involves filling a mental health assessment in a clinic waiting room could benefit teens suffering from depression.
The research is based on the examination of the available data. Sharolyn Dihigo, interim director of UT Arlington's Doctor of Nursing Practice program analyzed existing data to determine whether primary health professional settings should include a mental health screening of teen patients.
After examining the data she concluded that the simple paper test can make a big difference to the depressed teens. The CED-DC test is short for Center for Epidemiological Studies Depression Scale for Children. This test is free and those administering the screening do not need extra training. The test includes 20 questions on how much sleeplessness or unhappiness the teen patient experienced in the past week.
"Getting teens treatment when they need it is essential and has potentially life-saving benefits," said Dihigo, who is also interim director of UT Arlington's Doctor of Nursing Practice program. "Providing this test while a family waits for their appointment can overcome hesitation to talk about the feelings and behaviors linked to depression and lead to treatment success."