Monday June 24, 2019

Depression in Children Stay Undetected by Parents and Teachers- Study

The gold standard for identifying children who might be at risk for developing depression later in life is to ask the children themselves

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Depression is a major issue affecting millions of people, especially the teenagers. Pixabay

Parents and teachers may find it difficult to detect depression in young children, that can affect their social skills and academics, a new study shows.

According to Anxiety and Depression Association of America, as many as 2-3 per cent of children aged between 6-12 might have a major depressive disorder.

But parents and teachers face difficulties in recognising depression in children.

The findings, appearing in the Journal of School Psychology, showed that children who show mild to severe symptoms of depression in second and third grades are six times more likely to have skill deficits, such as difficulties with social skills or academics, than children without symptoms.

However, when teachers and parents were asked to rate a child’s level of depression, there was only about 5-10 per cent overlap in their ratings.

Depression
Parents and teachers face difficulties in recognising depression in children. Pixabay

“Some people would view that overlap as the truth about a child’s well-being and areas of disagreement as errors, but we need to explore the possibility that each of them are seeing different aspects of children’s behaviour and mental health,” said Keith Herman, professor in the University of Missouri (MU), College of Education.

For the study, the team completed profile analyses of 643 children in early elementary school to explore how patterns between student, teacher and parent reporting can be used to gain a holistic picture of a child’s mental health.

Herman suggested that mental health professionals could work with teachers and parents to identify depressive symptoms early by including self reports from children in mental health evaluations.

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“The gold standard for identifying children who might be at risk for developing depression later in life is to ask the children themselves,” noted Herman.

“However, even if a child doesn’t say they feel depressed, certain outward behaviours might provide clues to the state of the child’s mental health. It’s important for teachers and parents to catch these behaviours early to prevent long-term problems that occur with depression,” he said. (IANS)

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Future of The World Lies in Hands of Children, Says Actress Priyanka Chopra

"They are the future and we need to help.”

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Actress Priyanka Chopra Jonas, a global Unicef Goodwill Ambassador for Child Rights, marked World Refugee Day on Thursday with a special message.

The 36-year-old star pledged her support to children who have been forced to flee their homes. She even shared a video of herself from her meetings with children at refugee camps.

“The truth is quite simple… the future of this world lies in the hands of the children of today. But the harsh reality is that there is an entire generation of innocent children growing up right now without any prospects for thier future… these children are affected by displacement due to serious conflict and emergencies in thier various regions,” Priyanka wrote alongside the video on Instagram.

Actress Priyanka Chopra.

The actress, who has travelled to refugee camps in Jordan, Bangladesh and more recently in Ethiopia, added: “When families are forced to leave their homes due to violence, persecution, natural disasters, they are torn apart and it’s the children that end up suffering the most. The numbers are staggering, yes… but we have to continue to stand for them, in whatever capacity we can as individuals.”

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“They are the future and we need to help.” (IANS)