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Depression can affect children too. There are symptoms that indicate that the child may be depressed such as sudden mood swings, tantrums from any cause or high level of anxiety.
Parents are the most indicated to detect if the child may be suffering a depression process, but it will finally be the psychologist who can help him solve his problem.
The psychologist Silvia Álava tells us what the treatment for childhood depression consists of, how the psychologist acts to tackle the problem and what type of techniques he uses.
1. What does the psychologist do to treat childhood depression?
What we psychologists do to treat childhood depression is always essential in collaboration with parents. The first thing we ask parents is to observe and record what the child does, what he stops doing, the things that catch our attention.
In a second moment we sit down with those parents and we comment on those records that they have made one by one and we are observing and we are seeing what could happen to that child to establish very well what is the cause of the behavior that is what is maintaining it and what is much more important. Tell parents exactly what to do in those situations. Ultimately it is about establishing a baseline.
But then it is also important to work with children. And you have to work with children because techniques, sometimes self-control, sometimes you have to work on sadness. You also have to work with those thoughts that can be more negative. And what will always be fundamental when working with children is that parents know exactly the techniques we have worked on so that they can remember them.
2. What kinds of techniques are used to treat childhood depression?
The treatment of depression for both children and adults, cognitive behavioral therapy, is proven to be the most effective treatment there is. It is even more effective than a drug-only treatment. What do we do in this type of therapy?
Well, we dismantle the ideas and behaviors that are maintaining that depression and we teach the child, we teach the 'parents' to provide them with tools to be able to deal with those ideas that may be presented to them that generate greater anguish, or those situations that may concern them more.
3. When are more drugs used in the treatment of childhood depression?
The use of drugs in the treatment of childhood depression is something that is not usual. It is true that in some cases it is necessary, it is used in very specific cases, they are always more serious cases, they are cases that refer to mental health, and on many occasions they are usually another series of comorbid disorders that cause and are there together with depression and therefore may need medication. But I already said that there are very few cases.
4. When is depression caused by a hormonal problem?
It is important when we see that a child has depression problems, go to the doctor, go to the pediatrician. Why? Because the first thing is always to rule out a physiological cause of depression.
If there is a physiological cause, if there is a hormonal problem, then that child may need a pharmacological drug, so in psychology we always say that to rule out something somatic it is important that the physiological cause is first ruled out. So the doctor tells us that there is nothing physiological so that we can get to work.
You can read more articles similar to Treatment for childhood depression, in the category of Depression and anxiety on site.