“What frighten us adults is what frightened us as children.”
Before a mental illness gets blown out of proportion, it is important to keep an eye on the mental health of children and adolescents to identify the warning signs. In fact, several studies have now come out with the finding that the onset of many mental illnesses, including anxiety, depression, bipolar disorder, post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), etc., begin right during the growing phase of childhood or adolescence. While this has been proven in case of autism and attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), proofs are constantly emerging even in case of other mental illnesses.
Overall, it is not easy to spot the mental illness signs among children and adolescents due to the inability to distinguish naturally occurring behaviors from the symptoms of any mental illness. By learning about the developing symptoms and constantly keeping a keen eye on their behaviors, one can easily discern the changes that may not be considered natural. If doubtful signs and symptoms are observed in children or teens, it is advisable to get them treated immediately.
To delay or prevent mental disorders, some of the most common signs and symptoms have been discussed below:
1. Changes in mood
As mental illnesses always effect the way one thinks and feels, dramatic changes in a person’s mood are a common symptom to look for when one is trying to identify the problematic patterns. Overwhelming feelings, such as profound sadness, constant worry or withdrawal from activities that are otherwise fun to do can be seen as a big pointer to the onset of a mental health problem.
Besides affecting personal, professional and social life, mood swings also cause problems in maintaining relationships or fulfilling commitments. When such a problem arises without any valid reason, it is a sign of an impending mental health problem.
2. Inclination toward aggressive behavior
The other aspect that gets massively affected due to the onset of any mental illness is behavior. As one’s thought process and brain chemistry get a major blow due to a mental illness, people often turn aggressive and hyperactive. Overall, indulgence in physical fights, willingness to hurt others and tendency to use weapons can be some of the symptoms of a mental health problem.
3. Surge of intense feelings
As intense feelings are often associated with a mental health problem, having too much of irrational fears and worries can be a sign of a distressed mind. Many times, the affected person may not share their feelings with others due to the stigma attached to mental disorders.
However, one has to ensure to consult a medical practitioner in case of any intense feeling that is interfering with his or her personal life to be sure about a probable mental health reason behind his or her distressful situation.
4. Too distractive to concentrate
Many children and adolescents affected by a mental health problem find it excruciatingly painful to concentrate. Due to constant distraction from their studies and work, they often perform poorly in school or at job. A sudden spike in absenteeism, lack of interest in project or schoolwork, and lack of focus on achieving success can also arise due to mental health problems.
5. Noticeable physical symptoms
Children usually have headaches and stomachaches too. While adults often have more serious issues, children usually display symptoms that appear to be too simple. Moreover, abrupt weight loss without any apparent reason can occur.
6. Tendency to self-harm
People going through depression often try to harm or abuse themselves by resorting to cutting, burning or banging. Such risky behaviors are the sign of a mental health issue in the child or adolescent.
Root out the problem
As mental health problems can affect anyone, there are treatments that can bring back the lost charm of life in children and adolescents. By identifying the warning signs and sharing the trepidations with the loved ones, one can easily fight any mental disorder.
If you or your loved one has a mental health problem, get in touch with the California Mental Health Helpline immediately. Call us at our 24/7 helpline number 855-559-3923 or chat online to know more about the psychological rehabilitation centers in California.