• Increasing numbers of children and teenagers in the US are suffering from depression.
• Mental health issues have been exacerbated by the pandemic, leading to a rise in anxiety, loneliness and suicidal thoughts.
• There is help available and children can receive treatment such as talk therapy or medication.
Rising Rates of Childhood Depression
Before the COVID-19 pandemic, mental health issues among children and teenagers were already on the rise. According to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), one out of every five adolescents aged 13-18 was reported to have symptoms of depression in 2019. This number has only increased since then due to the added stressors brought about by the pandemic.
The effects of social isolation, lack of physical contact with friends and family, disruption of routine activities, and other factors associated with lockdowns have had a profound effect on the mental health of young people across America. The CDC reports that anxiety, loneliness and suicidal thoughts are all significantly more common now than before COVID-19 disrupted life as we knew it.
Fortunately there is help available for those struggling with mental illness during these difficult times. Talk therapy, medication or a combination thereof are all viable options when it comes to treating depression in both adults and children alike. Additionally, parents should be aware that certain lifestyle changes such as increasing exercise levels or reducing screen time could also be beneficial for their child’s mental health.
There are many resources available online for those seeking information about childhood depression including The National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) which provides free education programs for families affected by mental illness as well as crisis hotlines like 1-800-273-8255 which offer assistance 24 hours a day 7 days a week.. Parents should also look into finding support groups within their local community if they feel that their child needs additional assistance or simply someone who understands what they’re going through without judgement.
It is vitally important that parents recognize any signs of depression in their children so they can get them help if needed. With access to proper treatment such as talk therapy or medication along with lifestyle modifications where appropriate, children can learn how to manage their condition and lead happy fulfilling lives despite this challenging period in history we find ourselves living through today .