These days we can see the level of competition is too high that it becomes very hard for the children to handle it in the right way. Do not forget their studies and extra curriculum that needs to go the parallel way. Parents too are demanding when it comes to child’s escalated success. We often see parents comparing their children with other’s children, which itself it the root cause of depression. Reality shows, publicity, fame and other kind of competitions coming in our sphere children are soft target for depression. Children don’t play well nor do they get sleep well. They are over loaded with all kind of stuff. The childhood phase in them is been wiped out at a very early stage in life. Unlike adults, children don’t exhibit sadness or express like adults do, so it becomes difficult to recognize whether a child is depressed or not. They hold back their feelings and that in turn leads to stress and depression.
Here are some symptoms that could help you identify juvenile depression.
· Being very irritable or angry or start to respond negatively on anything and every thing.
· Becoming unenergetic and not responding to things where it could be fun for them.
· Feeling of not wanted or detected. (This happens usually when compared.)
· Not being able to concentrate and as a result fairing miserably at studies.
· Growth considered improper ie. Gaining and losing weight at a fast pace.
· Obesity in children.
· Crying without reason or anything and everything making them cry.
· Frequent illness.
· Feeling of “I can’t” in life.
· Mood swings. (Suicidal thoughts: take them to a qualified psychotherapist right away)
Tips to overcome juvenile depression.
· Talk to your child and make him/her understand that everyone faces depression.
· Allow the child to express.(If he/she wants to cry; let him/her cry but be with them to support their feelings with encouraging words and action).
· Make the child face the truth. We often try to cover their painful/hurtful feelings. (esp. getting the child a prize from the shop and gifting when failing to get a prize in the competition).
· Develop confidence of the child in you. This helps them to open-up everything to you.
· Do not over empathize with the child, rather empathize to lead the child back to recovery.
· Make the child understand various other options to excel and be better.
· Schedule time for the child to eat, play and sleep. Do not encourage the child to be obese.
· Develop a hobby of child’s interest.
· Seek opinions from them for decisions at home. This is helpful in implanting a feeling of being wanted and / or getting them mature to situations.
In spite of trying out all these if the child do not respond take him/her to a qualified psychotherapist who could assist your effort in leading the child out of situational depression.
Every child is unique and let him/her be what he/she is and excel in their field of interest. Bring the smile back on the child’s face.
Dr. Kurien S. Thomas
Clinical Psychologist, Counsellor, Wellness Therapist
Effective Living Clinic
B-3/19, 0:1, Sector 3, Vashi,
Navi Mumbai 400703