Nowadays, children are becoming victims of depression, even at a young age. Parents can play an essential role in preventing this disease in children. A recent study has found that under this new therapy of communication to children, parents can understand them better with the art of interacting with the children. (Depression in Children)?
During this study, the researchers found that the guardian can be prevented from behavioral disorders in children with this therapy. At the same time, these therapies can prove to be effective in getting children out of depression at a young age.
Let me tell you that depression has also been found in children in the age of 3 years in some cases. In some cases, children need to take anti-depressant medicines before going to school.
In this situation, children also need psychotherapy. These therapies, parents are taught the right technique for talking to children. Practicing these techniques can be done by the first supervisor of the guardian.
What are the Symptoms of Depression in children?
- Irritability or excess anger.
- Continuous feelings of hopelessness and sadness.
- Socially withdrawal.
- Increased insensitivity to rejection.
- Changes in their appetite ? it either increased or decreased.
- Changes in the sleep — excessive sleep or sleeplessness.
- Crying or Vocal outbursts.
- Difficulty in concentrating.
- Laziness, Fatigue, and low energy.
- Physical complaints (like headache and stomachache) that don’t respond to the treatment.
- Reduced inability to function during activities and events at home or some other places with friends, in the school, or extracurricular activities, and other interests or hobbies.
- Feelings of guilt or worthlessness.
- Feeling impaired while thinking or concentration.
- Thoughts of suicide or death.
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Researchers have also created the modules for their emotional development in/by this therapy to protect the children from depression at an early age. Those techniques which are used in this therapy can help parents to learn to control their feelings and emotions, and at the same time, they can also become their child?s better emotional partner too.
All of these techniques have been designed in such a way that the children can control their feelings, emotions, and can express their emotions better.
Depressed children of 3 to 6 years of age are kept in the depressed classes at a very early age. Also, the parents of such children are advised to use the therapy session to make their child better in the coming time. (Depression in Children)
There are seven times more chances of a decline in the social and academic skills in depressed children. Such children may find difficulty in talking and studying with other people.
Scientists and doctors say that there is a problem of depression in children aged between 6 and 12 years, but parents and teachers cannot quickly identify the depression in children.
Professor Keith Harmon of the Missouri University of America said that when you ask the teachers and the parents to measure the level of depression in children, their rating usually ranges from 5 to 10 percent.
She said that, for example, the teacher might know that there are some problems in making friends in the class of the child, but parents may not be able to pay attention to this problem in the house.
The researchers had analyzed the profile of the 643 children of primary school for this study. They told that 30 percent of the children had had more experience of depression in studies, but parents and teachers often fail to identify depression in children.
Hormones found in those children who were found to have signs of depression, there was a possibility of six times more fear of lack of skill than other children of their age.
Suicides are increasing in children and adolescents due to depression in modern times. In this case, it is essential to know what are the things that cause depression in children.
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What are the risk factors for major depression?
The following are the most common risk factors for major depression:
- Family history of depression (if someone already experienced depression as a child or adolescent in his/her time).
- Excess stress.
- Abuse or neglect.
- Trauma (emotional, or physical).
- Other types of psychiatric disorders.
- Loss of parents, caregiver, or some other loved one.
- Smoking Cigarette.
- Loss of a relationship (like moving away, loss of a girlfriend, or boyfriend).
- Some other chronic illnesses like diabetes.
- Some other developmental or learning, or conduct disorders.
Many children are suffering from stress in their current lifestyle. In schools and sports clubs, there is a constant pressure to perform better on them. There is also a lot of homework they have to complete. Stress weakens the physical mechanism. Stress leads to continuous cortisol in the body, which leads to depression.
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Less Activity in Sports:
Sports provides a lot of opportunity for learning and developing the brain. Children get a chance to solve problems, increase capacity, and understand their interests. Child psychologists say that fewer sports have reduced the capabilities of children. (Depression in Children)
Divorce or frequent quarrels between parents in the family have a terrible effect on children. According to a report, children related to broken families are more at risk of depression.
Excessive use of Sugar:
There are many such things to eat and drink in the market, due to which the use of sugar has increased, such as cake, sweets, and carbonated drinks. According to researchers, much of the quantity of sugar is related to depression and schizophrenia.
It also affects the hormones of brain development. Poor patients of depression and schizophrenia are found to have low levels of this hormone.
Pesticides used in crops, ingredients used for cleaning, adulteration of food, and pollution from trains can cause discomfort and depression problems.
Addiction to Electronic Games:
Children who play games, tablets, or smartphones in front of more than five hours a day in front of the screen are more likely to have depression.
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What To Expect From Treatment
Treatment for depression can take some time, and sometimes it involves some trial and error. None of the kids are the same, and it is essential to remain patient with the process to help your children feel safe. (Depression in Children)
Educating your children about depression is a very crucial first step. This will help your child understanding the possible causes (like environmental factors, genetics, bullying, and stress), understanding brain chemistry (like low serotonin), and it also reduces the self-blame. It also normalizes the situation through which your child is going through.
Counseling is a good option for kids who are struggling with depression. There are various kinds of counseling, and some works for one might not work for the other. For very young children, play therapy is the best option.
For elder kids and teens, Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) can be very useful. It can take some time to find the best patient/therapist match for them. Do make several calls, and do not be afraid to ask the questions because no one knows your child better than you.
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Medication might be necessary for moderate to severe cases, but medication works best when it combined with the counseling. The management of medicine is also vital. Under close supervision of the prescribing physician is recommended.
For severe cases of depression, which include suicidal idealization and also hospitalization, is sometimes necessary.
WHAT TO EXPECT AT HOME
Even with the medication, there is no quick fix for the depression. Treatment can be a bit long and arduous. Parents can help and support the children by doing the following things:
Encouraging them for daily exercise (this does not have to include the organized sport. In this family walks count).
Supervising any of the medication (it is too much to ask depressed children to manage his medication).
Make some time to talk with children. Counseling will surely help your children to begin to open up and verbalize his/ her feelings; it is your job to listen to them and provide unconditional support when your child opens about him/herself up at home.
Cook healthy food. A healthy food and lifestyle can help in the process of treatment.
Encourage your child with healthy sleep habits.
WHAT TO EXPECT AT SCHOOL
It?s challenging for a child to perform well in the school when the depression impairs a child’s thinking and concentration. It is essential to include the classroom teacher and a school counselor or a psychologist for the treatment team, which can help your child to work through his/her difficult times.
Some classroom accommodations might give benefit to your child during this difficult time. Talk to the class teacher about the following steps:
Extended time for lengthy tests and assignments.
It is breaking down the assignments into the manageable pieces (this is particularly helpful for the kids who appear ?overwhelmed?).
Help to create the schedules for the study or homework.
Provide a copy of class notes (helpful for the impaired concentration).
Taking tests in a quiet/peaceful room which will be free from any distractions.
It is also helpful to make a plan for your child break during the day. Examples might include a daily check-in with the school counselor or the psychologist in the early stage of the treatment and a weekly appointment as your child starts stabilizes him/herself.
WHAT TO EXPECT FROM YOUR CHILD
Children and adolescents are not mini-adults. They are changing and developing at a fast pace, even when they had experienced a depressive episode.
As such, symptoms can be intensified and lessen throughout the treatment. You might find that depression seems to have lifted, only to notice a relapse in depressive behavior a few days later.
Feeling overwhelmed, irritability and outbursts are common in depressed children. As hard as this can be for the parents on receiving the end of these behaviors, it is essential that the parents remain calm & focus on active listening.
It is the natural tendency for the parent to want to ?fix/solve? it or somehow put a stop to it, but mental illness is very complicated. It cannot be stopped or fixed. And it can, however, only improves.
With the proper treatment and the supports in place, your child can thrive and enjoy childhood once again. (Depression in Children)
Facts of Depression in children
- Depression is a condition that is more critical than the usual sadness and can significantly interfere with a child’s ability to function.
- The depression affects about 2% of the preschool & school-age children.
- Depression in children does not have any one specific cause, but it instead is a number of psychological, biological, and environmental risk factors that are part of its development.
- General symptoms of the depression, regardless of age, including having a depressed or loss of interest or irritable mood or pleasure for at least two weeks and having at least five clinical signs and symptoms.
- Suicide is the third major cause of death in young people between 10-24 years of age.
- To diagnose the depression, a health care professional will likely to perform or refer for a thorough physical examination and medical assessment and ask for standard mental health questions.
- Treatment for childhood depression might include addressing any medical conditions which caused or worsened the situation. It can also involve psychotherapy, lifestyle adjustments, and moderate to severe depression and medication.
- Cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT) and Interpersonal Therapy (ITP) are the primary approaches which commonly used to treat childhood depression.
- About 60% of the children who take antidepressant medication improves. It may take up to 6-7 weeks of treatment with the medicine at its effective dose to start developing.
- Childhood depression is a risk factor for the developing of several other mental health disorders and symptoms.
- Depression is the major cause of disability in the peoples and children’s of United States over five years of age.
- Prevention of childhood depression seeks to reduce the risk factors and strengthen the protective factors by using approaches that are appropriate for the children developmental level.
The family members and friends should seek mental health assessment and treatment for the depressed child.
Note: Depression Cure does not provide any type of medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment.