Childhood depression is a real illness that requires early diagnosis for treatment to be effective. Childhood trauma can result from any short or long term life event that disrupts a child’s sense of safety and security, including unstable or unsafe environments; separation from a parent through death, divorce, or deployment; serious illness or intrusive medical procedures; abuse or neglect of any kind; domestic or community violence; and bullying or harassment. The more helpless, frightened, or vulnerable a child feels as a result of the trauma, the more likely that child is to experience symptoms of post-traumatic stress, anxiety, or depression. As a parent, you know your child better than anyone else. If you feel your child needs help coping with a difficult life event, trust your instincts.
Warning signs of childhood depression can manifest as any sudden and significant change in normal activity patterns or interest levels. Specific circumstances that may benefit from direct intervention by a licensed psychologist or therapist can include: