With their first term over, many new university students will return home for the holidays full of stories of forged friendships and exciting adventures. But for others, the experience will have been a challenging one. They may have struggled with feelings of homesickness, isolation, anxiety and stress.

A survey in November 2014 found that those aged between 18 and 24 are four times as likely to feel lonely “most of the time” as those over 70*. And that poses a problem for parents – how can they help?

Now the answers can be found in a free guide. Produced by mental health experts, A Parent’s Guide To Depression aims to answer the questions families ask most often.

It tackles the challenges parents face including:

• how to distinguish between natural adolescent mood swings and depression

• ways to talk about your concerns with your child and help them open up about their feelings

• where to seek professional and medical advice

• understanding the therapies and treatments available

• how to help on a day-to-day basis.

The guide is produced by the Charlie Waller Memorial Trust. For 15 years the charity has worked to raise awareness of depression amongst young people, and equip them to look after their mental well being.

You can view the guide online here.