An estimated 5% of children in the United States suffer from the effects of chronic depression. At Ocean View Neuropsychiatry in Laguna Beach and Irvine, California, board-certified psychiatrists Ashraf Elmashat, MD, and Mohamed Yaser Elatrozy, MD, offer compassionate and comprehensive care to ease your child’s symptoms and help them thrive at home and school. They offer several treatment options to provide your child with long-term relief of depressive symptoms based on the specific needs of your child. Learn more about depression in children and adolescents by calling the office directly or schedule a consultation online today.
Depression is a condition that causes your child to experience persistent feelings of sadness, worthlessness, and hopelessness. In some cases, these feelings can lead to thoughts or actions of self-harm or suicide.
For children that experience chronic depression symptoms for two weeks or longer, you may notice a loss of interest in activities they used to enjoy or difficulties in engaging in their usual routine.
There are a number of factors that can influence your child’s risk of developing chronic depression. Many children develop depressive symptoms as a result of their genetic background. If depression runs in your family, your child may be at increased risk for the condition.
Other factors that can cause depression in children and adolescents include:
Your child may also develop depression for no specific reason. If they have other mental health issues, such as ADHD or an obsessive-compulsive disorder, depression may be a symptom of those conditions.
While every child may feel sad from time to time, chronic depressive symptoms shouldn’t be ignored. Untreated depression can result in additional mental health issues and increase your child’s risk of self-harm or suicide.
If your child has been isolating themselves or you see noticeable changes in their behavior, schedule an evaluation as soon as possible.
Each child receives a custom treatment plan that addresses the severity of their symptoms and the factors that influence their depression.
Dr. Elatrozy and Dr. Elmashat may recommend a combination of antidepressant medications and talk therapy to improve your child’s symptoms. They may encourage lifestyle changes that can help your child feel better, such as dietary changes to improve overall health.
Limiting time with electronics and engaging in more physical activity can also improve your child’s depressive symptoms. Dr. Elatrozy and Dr. Elmashat may also recommend resources to help your child deal with drug or alcohol abuse, family issues, or other mental or physical health problems that trigger depressive symptoms.
If you suspect your child or teen struggles with depression, don’t delay an evaluation. Call the office today to schedule a consultation or use the convenient online booking feature to learn more.