Childhood automatically spells bubbly laughter and screams of delight, doesn’t it? The occasional bad mood or violent outburst is, well, just what kids do. Shockingly, depression can affect kids too and it is important that you recognize the warning signs.
Depression stays longer than normal sadness and it has an effect on factors other than just the child’s mood.
Beware, just because your child does not “look depressed” does not mean that he or she is not suffering from the illness.
So, as a parent, how do you recognize the signs of depression in your little ones?
Signs of depression in kids
Some of the major cues that you should look out for if you suspect that your kid may have depression are:
Children with depression often feel worthless and lose interest in things or activities that they got great pleasure from. It is normal for a child to be irritable sometimes, especially if he or she is tired or hungry or ill. But if you notice your child constantly snapping, refusing to play with his or her friends, unwilling to take part in school activities, giving up on tasks easily, or simply unable to summon the effort required to do anything, he or she could be suffering from significant depression.
The scary fact is that when kids have severe depression, they have thoughts of suicide or self-injury, although this is rare.
Girls are more likely to try to commit suicide, whereas boys are more likely to be able to actually kill themselves in the attempt.
Kids with a family history of violence, abuse, and alcoholism are more likely to suffer from this illness.
Signs of depression in teens
Depression in teens can get dangerous because they have greater ability to act on suicidal thoughts and can inflict more injury to themselves.
What you should look out for:
There are no specific diagnostic tests for teen depression. A diagnosis is made by administering questionnaires by qualified professionals. On the basis of the severity of the illness, treatment options are discussed.
Don’t ignore the warning signs!
If your child often issues a verbal threat of committing suicide or talks of dying or feeling hopeless, don’t ignore it. Visit a medical professional and have your child checked.
If you would like to discuss the signs of possible depression that your child is exhibiting, you can ask a free question to our online experts at Askmile.