This study aimed at differentiating normative developmental turmoil from prodromal depressive symptoms in adolescence.
Negative and positive mood (daily) in different contexts (friends, home, school), and (subsequent) depressive symptoms were assessed in Dutch adolescents.
Results & conclusion:
Mixture modeling on one cross-sectional study, using a newly developed questionnaire (CSEQ; subsample 1a; n = 571; girls 55.9%; Mage = 14.17) and two longitudinal datasets with Experience Sampling Methods data (subsample 1b: n = 241; Mage = 13.81; 62.2% girls, sample 2: n = 286; 59.7% girls; Mage = 14.19) revealed three mood profiles: 18-24% "happy", 43-53% "typically developing", and 27-38% "at-risk". Of the "at-risk" profile between 12.5% and 25% of the adolescents scored above the clinical cut-off for depression. These mood profiles predicted later depressive symptoms, while controlling for earlier symptoms. In subsample 1b, parents were not always aware of the mental health status of their adolescent.