Anyone of any age can be subject to depression at anytime in life, due to various reasons. Children are just as susceptible to depression as what adults are, and for this reason alone it is vital for parents to know the causes of depression. If parents are observant and have a close relationship with their children, they can help to detect if depression is becoming evident in their children. Knowing the symptoms and causes of depression can greatly help and prevent it from spiraling out of control.
Here’s why it’s important for parents to know the causes of depression:
• Parents need to know the causes of depression
It is impossible to shield and protect your children from everything that could potentially harm them, however, it is important to let children grow and develop by exploring the world. There are certain factors and causes that could promote depression in children. Parents need to know the causes of depression to help prevent it from occurring, or to stop it from doing too much damage. Many young children, especially teens can suffer with depression. Teens that suffer with depression can, and have taken their lives.
• Keeping children safe
By being aware of the symptoms of depression parents can monitor their children’s well-being to ensure that they are kept safe. If the early symptoms of depression seem to be evident in your child, help can be given and the damage can be reduced. The earlier depression is detected, the sooner it can be treated. Children are not likely to realize the symptoms that are plaguing them and making them feel low are due to depression. The symptoms can persist and become more severe and may end in drastic, tragic results.
• Reasons for depression
Children, especially teens can be prone to depression for many reasons. Teens are at a stage in life where they are confused and their emotions are all over the place due to their hormones changing. Family feuds are often more prevalent during the teen years, as they strive for independence, yet they still need parenting and guidance. Mood swings can cause rifts in the family and home environment, and with friends. Family problems, stress, being bullied or any difficult events could cause depression in children.
• Symptoms of depression
Withdrawn and unsociable
Change in behavior
Altered sleep patterns
Altered eating habits
Feelings of hopelessness
Lethargic and lacking energy
Irritability, restless and easily agitated
Lack of interest in once enjoyed activities
Tearful, easily upset and crying often
Frequent headaches, stomach aches and feeling nausea’s
Suicidal thoughts and tendencies
If any of the above symptoms are prominent and have been ongoing for up to two weeks, depression could be looming. If this is the case, seek help to get your child back on track to be able to enjoy life again. It can be difficult to detect depression in children, as their moods are easily changeable.
• How to help your child
If any noticeable changes have come about, or your child seems to be lower in mood and easily upset with little or no reason it is best to speak to them to see if anything is bothering them. Be gentle and subtle in approach to avoid your child from recoiling. Be calm and patient, and listen attentively. Talk about day to day life and recent events asking questions to get an idea if something is not quite right. Whatever the reason, it is highly important to be supportive and gentle. It may seem trivial to you, but it is a big deal to your child.
• When to seek medical help for depression
It is always best to get medical help if you have an instinct that something is amiss, as it could help to reduce the pain and suffering for your child. There is no harm or embarrassment in seeking medical help. Doctors are equipped to give the right guidance, support and help that’s needed. Knowing the reason behind the unusual behavior is beneficial towards being able to treat the depression. Getting to the root cause and dealing with the problem together with medical help can literally save your child’s life.
It is important that parents are attentive to their children to be able to notice when they are in trouble. Children need support and it’s the parent’s role to always be there to protect and care for their children’s needs. No matter how headstrong and confident a child appears, they still need to know that their parents care. Keep the lines of communication open and continue to foster a good relationship with your children to ensure that they feel loved and important, and to ensure that their health and well-being is in good stead. Don’t dismiss your child’s symptoms and get help.