Signs of a Child Struggling with Mental Illness

Sudden angry outbursts or extreme emotional shifts

Children are often moody, get tired, and can misbehave a bit. However, when do you know when it is just children being children compared to an actual issue, even a mental illness?

If your child is having angry outbursts or extreme emotional shifts, they could have ADHD. Their outbursts or mood shifts often stem from a frustration from finding school more complicated and challenging than their peers do. If they seem more depressed than anything else, they could have dysthymic disorder. This is especially likely if symptoms are accompanied by minimal or excessive appetite, insomnia or fatigue, low self-esteem, and issues with concentration. If these occur, talk to your child's pediatrician.

Treating children with such disorders normally include cognitive-behavioral therapy, interpersonal therapy, traditional psychotherapy, and family therapy. Depending on the situation, medication may be used alongside the therapy. Be sure to discuss all the options with their doctor, and decide together which is right for them.