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- 1 How childhood affect mental health?
- 2 Mental problems in Childhood
- 3 Warning signs that it might be a more serious problem include:
How childhood affect mental health?
- How childhood affect mental health? What is the effect of childhood on mental health ? These questions usually come into our mind when we talk about mental health of children.
- Mental health is a vital part of overall health for children as well as adults.
- For lots of adults, who have mental problems, symptoms were present in childhood.
- But usually not recognized or addressed in childhood and adolescence.
- For a young individual with symptoms of a mental problems, the earlier treatment is started, the more useful it can be.
- Early treatment can help stop more severe, permanent problems as a child grows up.
- Sometimes it is not so easy to tell, if troubling activities in a child is just part of growing up or a problem that should be discussed with any mental health professional.
- If behavioral problems that persist for weeks or months, and they interfere with the child’s daily routine life activities at home and at school, or with friends, we should always contact a mental health professional.
Mental problems in Childhood
- It is a very tough and challenging task to raising a child.
- Still under the best conditions children behavior and emotions can change frequently and quickly.
- All children are sad, anxious, irritable, or aggressive at times, or they occasionally find it challenging to sit still, pay attention, or interact with others.
- In most cases, these are just typical developmental phases. However, such behaviors may indicate a more serious problem in some children.
- Mental disorders can begin in childhood. Examples include anxiety disorders, attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), autism spectrum disorder, depression and other mood disorders, eating disorders, and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).
- Without treatment, these mental health conditions can prevent children from reaching their full potential.
- Many adults who seek mental health treatment reflect on the impact of mental disorders on their childhood and wish they had received help sooner.
- It’s important to recognize and treat mental illnesses in children early on.
- Once mental illness develops, it becomes a regular part of child’s behavior. As a result it becomes more difficult to treat.
- But it’s not always easy to know when your child has a serious problem.
- Everyday stress can cause change in your child’s behavior.
- For example, getting a new brother or sister or going to a new school may cause a child to temporarily act out.
Warning signs that it might be a more serious problem include:
- Problems in more than one setting (at school, at home, with peers).
- Changes in appetite or sleep.
- Social withdrawal or fear of things he or she did not used to be not afraid of.
- Returning to behaviors more common in younger children, such as bedwetting.
- Signs of being upset, such as sadness or tearfulness.
- Signs of self-destructive behavior, such as head-banging or suddenly getting hurt often
- Repeated thoughts of death.
To diagnose mental health problems, the doctor or mental health specialist looks at child’s signs and symptoms, medical history, and family history. Treatments include medicines and talk therapy.
Young children may benefit from an evaluation and treatment if they:
- Have frequent tantrums or are intensely irritable much of the time
- Often talk about fears or worries
- Complain about frequent stomachaches or headaches with no known medical cause
- Are in constant motion and cannot sit quietly (except when they are watching videos or playing videogames)
- Sleep too much or too little, have frequent nightmares, or seem sleepy during the day
- Are not interested in playing with other children or have difficulty making friends
- Struggle academically or have experienced a recent decline in grades
- Repeat actions or check things many times out of fear that something bad may happen.
Older children and adolescents may benefit from an evaluation if they:
- Have lost interest in things that they used to enjoy
- Have low energy
- Sleep too much or too little, or seem sleepy throughout the day
- Are spending more and more time alone, and avoid social activities with friends or family
- Diet or exercise excessively, or fear gaining weight
- Engage in self-harm behaviors (such as cutting or burning their skin)
- Smoke, drink alcohol, or use drugs
- Engage in risky or destructive behavior alone or with friends
- Have thoughts of suicide
- Have periods of highly elevated energy and activity, and require much less sleep than usual
- Say that they think someone is trying to control their mind or that they hear things that other people cannot hear.
When to Seek Help
- How can you tell the difference between challenging behaviors and emotions that are a normal part of growing up and those that are cause for concern?.
- In general, consider seeking help, if your child’s behavior persists for a few weeks or longer; causes distress for your child or your family; or interferes with your child’s functioning at school, at home, or with friends.
- If your child’s behavior is unsafe, or if your child talks about wanting to hurt themselves or someone else, seek help immediately.
- Mental illnesses can be treated. If you are a child or teen, talk to your parents, school counselor, or health care provider.
- If you are a parent and need help starting a conversation with your child or teen about mental health , visit If you are unsure where to go for help, ask your pediatrician or family doctor.
- It may be helpful for children and teens to save several emergency numbers to their cell phones.
- The ability to get immediate help for themselves or for a friend can make a difference.
- The phone number for a trusted friend or relative
- The non-emergency number for the local police department.