Helping Mothers Understand the Challenges

Depression in Children

There is a misconception with some that children can’t be depressed. Adults ask themselves, how can a child who doesn’t have a job, or pays bills, or has the everyday pressures that adults face, possibly be depressed? This thought process is one of the reasons why depression in children is overlooked, and their condition goes untreated. Depression in children is real, and it is imperative for adults to recognize indicators in the child’s behavior and be supportive to help them navigate through their emotions.

What Depression Looks Like in Children

It’s important to understand that childhood depression sometimes manifests differently in children and teens than it does adults. What parents may think are behavior problems, acting out, or typical growing pains in their child may be symptoms of depression. Parents should be on the lookout for the following signs if they happen frequently and last more than two weeks:

    • Irritability
    • Anger
    • Defiant attitude
    • Declining grades
    • Physical complaints (stomach ache, headache)
    • Loss of interest in usual fun activities
    • Withdrawal from social or ordinarily pleasurable activities
    • Difficulties with concentration
    • Running away from home or talking about running away from home
    • Discussing death (written, verbal, or through their arts)
    • Changes in sleep patterns (sleep significantly increasing or decreasing)
    • Appetite/weight changes (more likely an increase, in depressed teens)
    • Occasionally, new or recent-onset agitation or aggression
    • Comments indicating hopelessness or low self-worth

Challenges Moms Face when Dealing Child Depression

A child suffering from depression can leave a parent feeling frustrated and helpless. Parents may feel guilty if they mistook their child’s depression as merely misbehaving. Parents must realize that detecting childhood depression is difficult because kids are still learning language and maturing, so they often struggle with articulating their moods and emotions. Older children and teenagers may feel embarrassed or uncomfortable about discussing their challenges, which leaves the parent in the dark or confused. Children that struggle with depression may act out in school, and their performance levels may decrease or change.

Overcoming Challenges

When children are diagnosed with depression, many parents fear the stigma or the side effects of medication that is sometimes prescribed to treat depression. Depression doesn’t always have to be treated with medicine. Be encouraged that there are natural treatments and remedies that will help children treat symptoms of childhood depression. Research holistic health and reach out to a qualified holistic health practitioner who will provide tools and resources for the child’s overall wellness. Here are some tips that parents can enable their child to begin practicing to help with childhood depression:

    • Visit a mental health specialist
    • Research and try botanical/flower remedies
    • Practice healthy sleep habits
    • Reduce the consumption of processed foods
    • Exercise
    • Meditate
    • Keeping a daily journal

It is essential for parents and children struggling with childhood depression to know they’re not alone. Depression is not a sign of weakness in the child or inadequacy in the parent. Ensure the child has a support system that is educated about child depression and is there to encourage and be positive. Natural treatment plans that focus on improving the child’s mental and emotional health are available. If you’re interested in natural and holistic ways to help with child depression visit us here

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