Not only in adults, depression can also occur in children. Depression in children can be characterized by several symptoms, such as persistent feelings of sadness, refusal to play, changes in behavior, and even depression drop achievement in school. To better understand the symptoms and treatment of depression in children, let's look at the following reviews.
Depression in children can limit their ability to function normally. This condition can occur due to several factors, ranging from bullying at school, violence and constant fights in the household, sexual abuse, parental divorce, wrong parenting, death of a loved one. In addition, depression in children can also be caused by other mental disorders, such as Tourette's syndrome, bipolar in children, autism, and ADHD.
Common Symptoms of Depression in Children
The condition of children who are depressed often goes unnoticed. This is because children have not been able to convey their feelings properly. Therefore, parents need to pay attention to changes in children's emotions and behavior.
Symptoms of depression in children can be divided into physical symptoms and mental symptoms. Here is the explanation:
Some of the physical symptoms of depression in children that need to be watched out for are frequent stomach pains, frequent headaches, not gaining weight or looking thinner, decreasing appetite or increasing rapidly, looking tired, and having trouble sleeping.
Mental symptoms of depression in children include:
- It becomes easy to tantrum, especially if he is criticized.
- Feeling sad or even hopeless.
- Unwilling or unable to complete schoolwork.
- Often lie.
- Loss of interest in hobbies or activities you used to enjoy.
- Prefers to be alone and is reluctant to interact or hang out with his peers, even with his family.
- It's hard to concentrate.
- Having thoughts of hurting yourself.
- Feeling very guilty and consider himself worthless.
- Often looks restless or anxious.
Children can be suspected of having depression if these symptoms last for more than 2 weeks, and interfere with the child's daily activities. If left untreated, symptoms of depression in children can get worse.
Depressed Child Care
If the child shows symptoms that are suspected of being depression, then parents should immediately take the child to a psychologist or child psychiatrist.
If a child is diagnosed with depression, then he needs to get treatment and medication. Some of the treatment steps that can be taken to overcome depression in children are:
- Counseling and psychotherapy, including cognitive behavioral therapy.
- Play therapy.
- Administration of antidepressant drugs.
The recommended treatment for a child with depression will be adjusted to the severity of the symptoms of depression, the child's response to therapy, and the child's ability to attend therapy sessions properly.
The Importance of Parental Support
The role of parents is very important in the depression recovery process in children as well as supporting their psychological and physical conditions. Parents need to accompany and support children who are depressed.
Depression therapy takes time before results can be seen. Therefore, parents need to be patient and provide emotional support to children during the therapy process.
Parents also need to make sure their children eat nutritious food, get enough sleep, exercise regularly, and have opportunities to do their hobbies. This will have a positive effect on his mood. Fun exercise routine, like playing balance bike, can be an option to support the physical and mental condition of children.
When children are depressed, parents will certainly be concerned, sad, and even frustrated. However, try to remain patient and understand the child's condition, because a positive relationship with parents will greatly help children in overcoming depression.