Child Mental Health Image

There has been a lot of focus put on the mental health of children and adolescents since COVID started. In October 2021, the American Academy of Pediatrics, the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry, and the Children’s Hospital Association joined forces and declared a national emergency in child and adolescent mental health. The American Academy of Pediatrics website stated, “We have witnessed soaring rates of mental health challenges among children, adolescents, and their families over the course of the COVID-19 pandemic, exacerbating the situation that existed prior to the pandemic. Children and families across our country have experienced enormous adversity and disruption.” 1. In March 2022, the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) released a survey that found that more than 1/3 of adolescents report having feelings of sadness and / or hopelessness on a persistent basis 2. There are several helpful parenting recommendations on the internet about how to help your children if they are suffering from mental health conditions, such as having open communication, but sometimes parenting skills are not always enough to address the issue and professional help is needed.

It can be hard to remember how tough being a kid was. As an adult, it is easy to get wrapped up in adult issues such as paying bills and keeping food on the table. It is important to remember that children can also suffer from mental health conditions such as stress, anxiety, depression, and more. Sometimes they may have it worse than adults realize because we can’t understand the kinds of stressors they are dealing with, such as school culture, bullying, social media, and peer pressure. If your child is struggling with mental health you may want to consider consulting with a therapist or medical professional.

For some kids, it may be difficult to talk about mental health struggles, but professional help can guide them. There are mental health professionals and therapists that specialize in different age groups, types of therapy, and medical conditions. Some common conditions that kids receive therapy for include family issues, school issues, health problems, eating disorders, losing a loved one, and more. Having your child go to therapy does not mean that they will have to go forever. There are many factors that contribute to how long therapy is needed.

If you are a parent and are seeking therapy for your child, make sure to do your homework and find a therapist that you and your child are comfortable with. Talk with your child about how they feel about going to therapy. Don’t be intimated to try therapy for yourself or your child. Therapists and medical professionals are there to help you.

Resources

  1. Aap-AACAP-Cha Declaration of a national emergency in child and Adolescent Mental Health. American Academy of Pediatrics. (n.d.). Retrieved May 10, 2022
  2. Adolescent behaviors and experiences survey – cdc.gov. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. (2022, April 1). Retrieved May 9, 2022