Depression in adolescence is under-recognized although its associated burden of illness is very high. Some frequent associations with depression in this age group are under-achievement, poor lifestyle choices including substance abuse, and a high risk of the persistence of the illness into adulthood. There is also an increased risk of mortality related to suicide and harmful lifestyles. For depression in adolescents to be reduced, there needs to be strong collaboration among health professions, adolescents and their caregivers. Non-mental health clinicians must expand their role and become better prepared to recognize, prevent and treat depression in this age-group. Greater public awareness must also be achieved so that adolescents and their caregivers can seek help early.