When you become a parent, your sole focus will be on providing plenty of love, care and support to your child. As your little one maneuvers through adolescence, you may struggle to tell if your child’s behavior and emotions are something to worry about.
Every child misbehaves or gets moody sometimes. However, some signs could indicate something more serious is going on.
Your child’s mental health matters more than anything, so here are five signs that could indicate your child has a psychiatric disorder.
If you notice one of the signs presented below, the best thing you could do is to go to a doctor as soon as possible. Even if you are wrong, it is still worth getting checked out.
1. Extreme Hyperactivity
Although it’s completely normal for your child to be happy and bubbly, if their behavior is becoming more erratic, it’s time to take notice. Even if your kid is talking excessively, unable to sit still, or fidgeting constantly, these are signs of extreme hyperactivity you shouldn’t ignore.
You need to make a doctor’s appointment straight away, as your child may be displaying symptoms of ADHD (Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder). The good news is that ADHD can be managed. However, it is just a whole lot better to identify the condition as early as possible.
2. Excessive Worries and Fears
Although we all get anxious to an extent, if your child is worrying excessively, this is another sign that something could be wrong. Your child may feel nervous, tense, have a sense of impending danger, or be breathing rapidly. Excessive worries and fears can hinder your child’s quality of life, especially if they’re always feeling on edge and preparing for the worst. Rather than ignoring these signs, it’s time to take them to a doctor.
3. Loss of Interest
On the flip side to excessive worrying, if you’ve noticed your child has started to lack interest in the things they once loved, this could be a sign that they’re depressed. If they’ve stopped going out with friends, or are staying in their room for longer, this needs to be addressed sooner rather than later. It can be heartbreaking to see your child’s behavior change, so don’t delay in seeking medical advice.
Fortunately, in many situations, the loss of interest is simply because the child does not like something. For instance, we all have a specific subject in school that we loved and others that we did not like. Those that we liked are the ones that we were interested in. And simply because we did not show interest in something did not mean that we were not interested in others. However, it is still a lot better to be safe and get some tests done.
4. Sudden Change in Weight
If you have noticed your child has gained a significant amount of weight, or they’ve dropped pounds, this could indicate they have an eating disorder. When you’re next sitting down for a meal, pay more attention to how your child views their food.
Children can become incredibly crafty and hide what’s really going on. If your child isn’t touching their plate and making excuses, this is a concern. Now may be the time to intervene and take them to see a doctor.
5. Poor Performance at School
If your child was once a high performer at school and they’re now falling behind on their work, there are all sorts of things that could be the reason behind it. Many children suffer from anxiety and depression, which can hinder their school performance and cause them to fall off track.
As with most psychological conditions, the good news is it is possible to treat them when discovered early. This includes things like depression and anxiety. Poor school performance can easily be increased with a trip to the doctor and proper surveillance from professionals.
What to Do Next
Now that you have a better idea of what to look out for, if you believe your child may have a psychiatric disorder, it’s time to see a doctor.
Should your child be diagnosed with intensive psychiatric needs, it may be wise to look into compassionate residential services, like Maple Grove treatment center, who are trained to help children and families build lives that are meaningful, enriching and sustainable.
Just like with adults, many children are plagued with mental health problems. You may be surprised to learn that 1 in 5 children have a mental illness. Therefore, knowing the signs and what to look out for will help when it comes to seeking support for your child.
It is a very good idea to find a really good doctor for your child before you will actually need it. This is simply because it is just better to be safe instead of being sorry.