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16 July 2010

Mood disorders undetected in kids

Children who suffer from anxiety or depression may not be getting the help they need. Mental health experts say the reasons are complicated, but fixable.

Children who suffer from anxiety or depression may not be getting the help they need. Mental health experts say the reasons are complicated, but fixable.

This is a serious public health problem, doctors say. If left untreated, childhood anxiety and depression can grow into even more serious mental health problems later in life, said Dr Jon Shaw, a professor and director of child and adolescent psychiatry at the University of Miami Miller School of Medicine.

  • Loss of interest in activities they once enjoyed.
  • Loss of self-confidence.
  • Weight changes. Younger kids may develop a poor appetite and lose weight, and older ones may eat more and gain.
  • Different sleep habits - either sleeping more or less than usual.
  • Unusual bouts of anger.
  • Headaches or stomachaches.

  • Unrealistic worry about everyday activities, including academics, sports and leisure-time plans.
  • Increased self-consciousness.
  • Extreme need to please others.
  • Low self-esteem and the need for frequent reassurance.
  • Self-doubt and being highly critical of themselves.
  • Stomachaches and pains that seem to have no physical cause.

    (HealthDay Nerws, July 2010)
 
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