Children with Depression

Childhood depression is an underrecognized and underdiagnosed condition. Due to the stigma associated with mental illnesses in general, some parents are reluctant to seek help, even when they suspect that something may be wrong.

The earliest signs of depression in children include sudden changes in academic performance, changes in eating and sleeping habits, and significant fluctuation in weight. The child may appear to lose interest in the things that used to fascinate her. Excessive fatigue or irritability may also indicate the onset of depression.

If you suspect your child may be depressed and she is demonstrating the changes described above, you should seek the help of a mental-health professional immediately. There are many approaches to childhood depression. Some involve counseling and behavior treatment, while others involve the use of medication. A delay in treatment can have devastating consequences.

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