Signs of Children’s Mental Health Problems
Can the children face Mental Health Problems? How can I know that my child is sad or depressed or scared? Why my little girl is always in bad mood, often show temper tantrums? How can I help my children? All these queries seriously lead us to know the Signs of Children’s Mental Health Problems in detail and help our children to cope with their mental health issues.
According to the report of WHO titled the Mental Health of Adolescents ,
Depression, anxiety and behavioural disorders are among the leading causes of illness and disability among adolescents.
Globally, one in seven 10-19-year-olds experiences a mental disorder, accounting for 13% of the global burden of disease in this age group.
So, it is a prime concern now to create awareness among people regarding the mental health issues of children, that’s why we should know the signs of children’s mental health problems so that we can help them, guide them to cope with their mental problems.
Common Mental Health Disorders of Children
Not only the adolescents but also the little children are also suffering from anxiety, tension, phobia and stress. The mental health issues seen commonly among the children and adolescents are-
.Anxiety Disorders- Generalized Anxiety Disorder, Separation Anxiety Disorder, Anxiety Attack, Panic Attack etc.
.Behavioral Disorders like ADHD (Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder), Conduct Disorder etc.
.Emotional Disorders- frequent Mood Swings, Irritability, Crying Spells, sadness
. Depression – Acute depression leads to Social Isolation, Social Withdrawal and even in Suicide.
.Eating Disorders like Anorexia Nervosa, Binge Eating, Bulimia Nervosa etc.
.Psychosis associated with Hallucinations and delusions
.Substance Abuse Disorders- addicted in drugs, alcohol
.Body Dysmorphic Disorder- Negative self-image, low self-esteem
Moreover, sleeping problems, uncontrolled anger, low self-esteem, low self-confidence, expression issues, tendency of self harm etc. are also seen among the children and adolescents. So, it is now utmost important for us to know the signs of children’s mental health problems and the coping strategies to help them to manage or overcome their issues.
Major Symptoms and Signs of Children’s Mental Health Problems
Various physical and psychological signs are seen among the children suffering from mental health issues but often we, the adults, cannot identify those signs as the signs children’s mental health problems and thus mental health issues are ignored or neglected. Actually, the mental health issues of children are beyond our imagination or thinking level but the reality is that one in seven in the age group of 10-14 years globally having a mental disorder. Here the common symptoms and signs of children’s mental health problems are stated to help the parents and other caregivers to identify the issues in their children and also to offer support to their children.
Anxiety Disorder- Signs and Symptoms
The common signs and symptoms of persons suffering from anxiety disorders are-
. Frequent Mood Swings, Irritability
. Being Angry easily, Crying spells.
. Cannot concentrate, always in tension or worry.
. Fatigue, being clingy.
. Having a Fear or Phobia.
. Often show Temper Tantrums.
. Low Confidence and low Self- esteem, often in need of Reassurance.
. Physical Signs-
. Often complaining about Headache, feeling unwell or Nausea
. Stomachache, upset stomach, indigestion problems.
. Difficulty in Sleeping.
. Eating Disorders- cannot eat or eat too much.
. Sometimes have Bad Dreams at night often associated with Bed wetting.
Depression- Signs and Symptoms
The common signs and symptoms of people suffering from depression are-
. Psychological Signs-
. Persistent feeling of sadness for a long period, hopelessness.
. No interest in any activities including the daily activities or hobbies.
. Crying spells, prefer to stay Alone.
. Irritability, frequent anger or frustration.
. Negativity in Thinking, attitude or behavior
. Lack of Concentration or Focus
. Low Energy, Fatigue easily.
. Having Thoughts of Self-Harm or Suicide
. Physical Signs-
. Frequent Headache, not feeling well.
. Upset Stomach, Digestion Problems.
. Less of Appetite or eating too much.
. Lack of Sleep or Sleeping too much.
. Tiredness, Fatigue.
. Muscle Pain, Backpain.
Often the feeling of guilt, worthlessness, anxiety etc. are associated with depression. Only by knowing the Signs of Children’s Mental Health problems, one can help the children and adolescents.
ADHD- Signs and Symptoms
The Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder is mainly associated with inattentiveness and hyperactivity. According to the Mental Health Report of Adolescents published by WHO, Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), characterized by difficulty paying attention, excessive activity and acting without regard to consequences, occurs among 3.1% of 10-14 year-olds and 2.4% of 15-19 year-olds. The other signs and symptoms are-
. Impulsiveness, excitability
. Irritability and Aggression.
. Persistent repetition of words and actions.
. Very Short Attention Span, Absent-mindedness.
. Frequent Mood Swings, poor Emotional Control.
. Problems in Focusing, poor concentration.
. Cannot do the Multitasking.
. Finding it very hard to sit or stand still for sometimes.
. Often Speak at Inappropriate times.
the ADHD can affect a person in adulthood also if it is not identified or treated in childhood.
Panic Attacks- Signs and Symptoms
It is very important for the parents to know the signs of children’s mental health problems like the panic attacks for the early identification of the mental health issues and to offer the support to them. The common signs and symptoms of panic attacks are-
. It feels like a real Heart Attack associated with Breathing Difficulties and Palpitations.
. Trembling or Shaking of Body.
. Dizziness or faintness.
. Hot flushes, Sweating.
. Nausea, Abdominal Cramping
. Chest Pain, Headache.
. Tingling Sensation
. Fear of Loss or Death, Intense fear
If anyone has recurrent panic attacks facing a little bit stressful situation, spend long periods of time in fear of another attack may be suffering from Panic Disorder.
Conduct Disorder- Signs and Symptoms
It is the mental disorder found in adolescents who display aggression, violence or destructing behavior. They have the tendency of self-harm, hurting others or often display the risk-taking behavior. According to WHO, Conduct disorder (involving symptoms of destructive or challenging behaviour) occurs among 3.6% of 10-14 year-olds and 2.4% of 15-19 year-olds(1). Behavioral disorders can affect adolescents’ education and conduct disorder may result in criminal behaviour.
Eating Disorder- Signs and Symptoms
The signs of children’s Mental Health Problems often make us aware to treat those issues and help them to lead a productive life. Eating disorders serious condition that affect both our mental and physical health. Often these disorders are associated with anxiety, stress, fear or depression. People suffering from this disorder often show abnormal pattern of eating- do not want to eat food or eat too much food, do binge eating associated with purging or simply start intense fasting. It is seen more in girls than the boys and it has high mortality rates than other disorder, Anorexia Nervosa, Bulimia Nervosa ,Binge Eating are the different types of eating disorder.
Acute Stress Disorder- Signs and Symptoms
The parents or teachers often notice some signs in children which may be identified as the signs of children’s mental health problems like excessive tension, anxiety, fear or phobia in them . In Acute Stress Disorder, children feel numb or detached from one’s body, dissociation, irritability and hopelessness associated with nausea, palpitations, chest pain, headache or breathing difficulties. This disorder is often triggered by a traumatic event or highly stressed situation and the children and adolescents also feel eating difficulties, sleeping difficulties etc.
Words from Wingsofwishes.in
Only the awareness of parents and other caregivers about the signs of children’s Mental Health problems can help our beloved children to cope with their mental issues. Let us make our Mental Health our first priority.