A sad face that hides behind a mask of smiles cannot be seen by everybody. Sometimes, even parents cannot see this in their own child. It is important for parents to know and understand their child’s emotional and psychological well being. There might be a case of your child being deeply disturbed by an incident that has occurred or is happening in his/her life.
Depression is a peculiar type of sadness in which the individual undergoes a prolonged phase of sadness. It can be confused with sadness, but you should know that depression is a sadness that lasts more than 3 months and can go on for a very long period, and this makes it extremely unhealthy for your child.
You know your child is depressed when you notice these factors:
1. Decreased sleep and hunger
2. Continuous feelings of hopelessness and sadness
3. Trouble concentrating
4. Feeling of guilt
5. Social withdrawal
Dealing with your child at this stage can be challenging. You need to be patient when dealing with them.
Here are few ways you can try to talk to your child.
1. Children will hide it and ignore their feelings. They might not even realize that they are depressed. They need your guidance and support at this time. Even if they avoid you, show them that you need them and make them realize how much they mean to you.
2. Make sure that your child eats sufficient food. Make sure they get all the nutrients they require and they never skip their meals. Staying hungry makes anyone cranky and upset, so it will just add to their state of depression. Eating well will help in boosting their energy to perform physical activities and therefore, he/she will be able to sleep better.
3. Spend more time together and bond over things that you and your child like. It can be anything that is significant for the two of you. You can do fun activities like playing games, doing some craftwork, cooking, reading story books, shopping or baking a cake.
Doing these things will boost positive emotions in your child, gradually making them feel happier. Surrounding them with positivity is very important.
4. Talk about depression and mood swings. You need to be really patient to understand your child. Talk about his/her feelings about anything and everything, or even issues at school. Talk to your child as often as you can without making them uncomfortable. THey need to know that they can talk about things with you without hesitation.
5. Visit a psychiatrist if your child does not show any signs of improvement even after 3 months.
Depression is real, and you as a parent need to know about the ways it can affect the life of your child. After all, for every parent, their child’s happiness is as good as their own happiness.