Warning Signs of Mental Illness among Kids

By Helen Holmes on November 04, 2011

While this mental condition is plaguing numerous adult people, children are also victims of emotional turmoil.  They also get depressed and they may experience mental illness.  Infants, toddlers, and kids – they may all develop unwanted mental conditions. On the latest report from the Office of National Statistics, one out of 10 children in Great Britain aged between five and sixteen has a recognisable mental disorder.

Why Do Kids Get Depressed?

What makes things really difficult is that it’s not easy to tell whether a child is undergoing depression or not.  They don’t even know what depression or mental illnesses means in the first place.  If kids are feeling low, it’s very unlikely that they will tell their parents about it.  According to Dr William Klykylo, professor and director of the Division of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry at the Wright State University in Ohio, most parents think that their kids are doing fine.  But this is not always the case.

Warning Signs of Mental Illness among Children

There are various manifestations of mental illness among children.  They include changes in the behaviour at home and in school.  The following are the warnings signs of mental illness among children:

-          Some kids tend to be hyperactive while others are very introvert.

-          Sleeping disorder, excessive fear and worries.

-          Changes in their mood

-          Crying out loud even though there’s nothing wrong, persistent irritation.

-          Severe aggression or disobedience to their parents, teachers, and other people above their age.

-          Frequent tantrums.

-          Hurting peers and animals.

-          Deliberate grumpiness especially when being separated from their parents.

-          Headache, digestive problems, body pain, and fatigue

-          Feeling of restlessness

What Can Parents Do?

If emotional needs can be compensated with new toys, wonderful bedroom, delicious meals, chocolates and gifts – there could have been very few children who are depressed right now.  Even kids from the meager families are provided with these things.

But then, they are not enough to make children happy.  The things mentioned above are just to compensate the physical and nutritional health of children. Experts believe that the reason why kids get depressed is because they are not mature enough to handle rejections and disappointments.  Because of this, the child’s mental health should be given attention as well.  Parents should at all times give their kids the following:

-          Unconditional love and support

-          Opportunity to play and explore their world with other kids

-          Safe and wholesome environment

-          Feeling of security

-          Adequate attention

-          Proper discipline and guidance

The lack of any of these things leads to depression and mental illness. Experts advise parents that if they sense something’s going on with their kids or if a teacher, counsellor, or any person close to the family says there’s seems to be something wrong with the child, parents should start seeking help.  There are several treatments that can be used to address mental problems among kids.  These include talking therapy such as psychotherapy and counselling. While the use of antidepressants can be another option, this is highly discouraged as it may cause unwanted side effects to the child.

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