Common Myths About Adolescent Mental Health And Warning Signs For Parents
Oct 20, 2018 / wishhealth / Healthcare
In recent years, there has been a tremendous increase in the number of adolescent mental health issues. It has become a common problem these days. However, it can be treated if you have the right knowledge and the tactics. Most of the people think mental health issues as social stigma which prevents them from getting the help they require. It is very important to become aware of the myths and facts related to these issues so that these issues can be treated on time.
Let’s take a look at some of the common myths about adolescent mental health and warning signs for parents:
Myth: An adolescent with a mental health condition is damaged for life
It is a common myth that a child with a mental health condition cannot be cured. You cannot calculate the caliber of a child based on a psychiatric disorder. In case the problem is diagnosed at an early stage, it can be treated.
Myth: Mental problems result from personal weakness
You should always remember that no mental health condition occurs due to weakness. These conditions are genetic or trauma related. They can also occur due to substance abuse. With an effective diagnosis and treatment plan, these issues can be cured.
Myth: Mental health issues occur due to bad parenting
A child’s home environment cannot be the cause of a disorder. However, if the child already has the problem, a bad parent-child relationship can worsen the condition. Most of the conditions such as anxiety, depression, autism and learning disorders have biological causes. However, parents play a vital role in their child’s recovery from such condition.
Myth: A child can manage a mental illness through willpower
A mental illness is not just mild anxiety or a mood swing but it involves severe distress. It can cause a deep impact on a child’s life. A child cannot manage his mental illness merely by his willpower as his internal resources are still developing. He lacks the life experience to deal with such overwhelming conditions.
Myth: Therapy for children is a time- waste
Most of the people think that therapy for children does not work. But this isn’t true. Cognitive behavioural therapy can be recommended for kids with mental health issues as it helps to change the thoughts, feelings and behaviours, causing serious problems. According to research, such conditions can be cured if the treatment starts during the initial years of the condition.
Myth: Children are over-medicated
Many people question the use of medications in the treatment of mental illness for their child. However, child therapists prescribe a small dose of medications to the child for a minimum time period so that it does not cause any harm to the child.
Myth: Children grow out of mental health problems
The chances of getting out of the mental health problem on your own are very less. Rather a person who is diagnosed with a major mental illness is more likely to experience it again. That is why just waiting is not the solution. You need to provide proper diagnosis and treatment.
Also, read this: Depression Affecting People Below 30 Years Of Age
Symptoms of an adolescent mental health condition
Let’s take a look at some of the symptoms of an adolescent mental health condition:
- If the child is avoiding his family and friends, it can be a warning sign.
- In case the child is suddenly showing poor performance in his studies and other activities in school.
- Anger, visible distress, crying, hurt feelings etc. are prominent symptoms.
- Sudden changes in sleeping or eating habits.
- Physical pain in the body such as headaches or stomachaches.
How can parents help their child in dealing with a mental health issue?
Let’s have a look at how parents can help their child in dealing with mental health issues:
Cover the basics:
You, as a parent, should have a clear idea of what’s going on in your child’s life. Talk with your child. You can ask him if he is hungry or thirsty. You should know if he is able to sleep properly at night. Monitoring the health of your child is very important if he is suffering from any kind of mental health illness.
It is very important to analyse the behaviour of your child. You should evaluate if the behaviour of your child is causing any harm to anyone. Also, in case you get involved in any argument with your child, make sure you are calm and avoid raising voice. Try to make your child understand his mistakes in a better way.
Your home environment plays a crucial role in the growth and development of your child. Create a positive and stress-free environment in your home. Appreciate your child for his positive qualities and show that you care about him. If your child completes certain tasks on time, praise him. This will help to boost his morale.
Communication is important:
Make your child comfortable when he tries to talk to you. He should be able to express all his thoughts, feelings, anxieties etc. freely with you. When your child comes to you, listen to him with patience. You may not be able to understand all the things, but try your best to understand him.
Connect with nature:
Outdoor activities are very important for mental health. You can try taking your child to a walk, bike riding etc. You can ask him to do certain physical exercises which can help in improving his overall health.
Timing is everything:
When your child is stuck in a stressful situation, give him some space. You can discuss the issues later when he has restored his control. In this way, you can prevent worsening the situation.
Making a routine can be quite beneficial for your child if he is suffering from mental illness. You can include a healthy breakfast in the morning so that your child feels energetic even in school. do not forget to include physical activities in his routine.
If you are looking for a doctor for your child, Wish Health can help you. With our online health portal, you can easily connect with the best doctor in your area.