When you think of someone struggling with depression, what comes to mind? You probably imagine someone who is sad, withdrawn, has low energy and is constantly tired, or has a decreased mood. And you would be right. These are some of the most common symptoms of depression in children and adolescents.
You’ve noticed some changes in your child or teen and you’re wondering if something more is going on than them just having a rough day. Perhaps their teacher or coach has mentioned something to you about changes in their behavior. Maybe they are having trouble focusing in school, started acting out, crying in school, complaining of a stomach ache or having trouble making friends. Figuring out what is going on with your child can feel overwhelming as a parent. Where do you even start to try to figure out what is happening?
There is a persistent swirl of myths, inaccuracies, fears and assumptions that surround mental illnesses and their treatment. The origins of these beliefs are vague, but our mission is clear: educate adults and children about mental illness, start conversations, and promote appropriate treatment and care for children experiencing a range of mental, emotional or behavioral disorders. To accomplish this, we work hand-in-hand with parents, caregivers, physicians, therapists and the children themselves. In our work, these are the most common myths we encounter, and the facts that disprove them.
Recognizing the warning signs of drug use/abuse in youth isn’t easy. Recognizing those warning signs in our own children is even harder in part because as parents, we don’t let ourselves believe that our children could be struggling. Substance abuse is a serious issue nationwide.
Few people – if any – would argue that the mental health of our children is not important. Quite the opposite, children’s mental health can have a profound effect not only on their quality of life, but also on the quality of the communities that surround them. A happy, healthy child grows into a happy, healthy adult. Unfortunately, that future isn’t a guarantee for any child, and even less so for children experiencing mental illness.
Topics: Is My Child Sick?
One in five children will experience mental illness – that’s 80,000 children in Bexar County alone – but you wouldn’t know it to look at them. Mental illness isn’t something you can see like a broken arm or the measles, and its invisibility can make it difficult to notice, understand and identify. Mental illness is also an all-encompassing term for a variety of conditions with symptoms that can vary from person to person.
Topics: Is My Child Sick?