Depression is a psychological disorder that affects the individual’s energy, mood, etc.
It was felt that children will not suffer from this condition, but researches recognized that they could also become depressed depending on the situations.
Parents must learn to identify the depression in child.
Depression in child is associated with situation such as learning problems at school, severe altercations with peers at school, inferiority complex, acting out in school, etc.
Parents should know their child’s behavior and symptoms of depression. If your child is sad, you should not think that he/she is in depressed state.
When the sadness persists or when the disruptive behavior interferes the normal social activities, then it indicates that your child is in depressive state.
You can recognize the depression in children with some signs and symptoms, which include irritability/anger, difficulty concentrating, feelings of guiltiness, sadness, worthlessness, and hopelessness, changes in appetite and sleep, increasingly sensitive to rejection, impaired thinking, crying or outbursts, physical complaints that are not responding to treatment, inability to function actively in daily activities, thoughts of death and suicide, etc.
It is not necessary that all depressed children will have the same signs and symptoms. The symptoms will vary depending on time and situation.
There might be any cause for the depression in child. Depression in children can be caused by any factor that relates to family history, physical health, biochemical disturbances, etc.
For example the causes might be divorce of parents, stressful experiences in life, social skill deficit, death of loved ones, family history of mood disorders, failure in sports, and many more.
If your child is depressed, then as a parent you have to manage the depression in child. Here are some advices for parents of depressed child.
- Take care of your child.
- Spend sometime with your child.
- Make your child enjoy some pleasurable activities.
- Continue routine and regular physical activities that are suitable for the current mental condition for your child as physical activity helps reducing some depression [Depression Management].
- Make your child to avoid skipping meals. Regular diet is the source of energy and ability to cope.
- Maintain regular pattern of sleep, as it will reduce the symptoms of depression in child. Irregular sleep pattern worsens the depression symptoms.
- Evaluate drugs before using them. The drugs that are medically not appropriate for the condition may lead to more depression in child. Consult your physician before taking any drugs.
- Know more about the medications that your child is taking. At the same time, you should consult the pharmacist or doctor to know the side effects of the medications.
The children with family history of alcohol abuse, physical or sexual abuse, and violence are at risk for suicide [Child Abuse].
There are many treatments available for the depression in child, which include medications, psychotherapies, and social skills for depression.
It is good to seek consultation from a qualified mental health professional if the symptoms of depression in child are severe, prolonged, unexplained or unusual, and debilitating.