Kathmandu, February 17
Psychiatrists have advised parents to listen to their children’s problems.
“Children today are suffering from various kinds of mental health problems. They are found to be suffering from stress, anxiety, depression,” said Dr Ritesh Thapa, director and consultant neuropsychiatrist at Rhythm Neuropsychiatry Hospital and Research Centre, Ekantakuna. Every day four to five children suffering from mental health problems visit the hospital, as per Dr Thapa.
Early detection of mental health problems will help children cope better with disorders. Parents can find out if their children are suffering from mental health problems by watching their behaviour. Children suffering from mental health problems refuse to go to schools, quarrel with friends, tear papers and copies, stay alone, show repetitive behaviour, do not get along with friends and draw pictures using dark colours, among other things. However, symptoms of mental health diseases are different as per the type of mental health disorder.
“Children also are restive when they suffer from mental health problems. They suffer from attention deficit hyperactivity disorder. It is a condition in which a person has trouble paying attention and focusing on tasks, tends to act without thinking, and has trouble sitting still. It may begin in early childhood and can continue into adulthood,” the doctor said.
“Conduct disorder is a behavioural and emotional disorder that can occur in children and teenagers. A child with this disorder displays a pattern of disruptive and violent behaviour and has problems following rules. The child does not obey the elders, there is school refusal and there is more quarrelling among the peer groups,” informed the doctor.
Similarly, children are also likely to suffer from stress due to bullying in school and failure in academics. Children can suffer from mental health problems from a very early age. “They fail to maintain eye contacts, do not respond when called, do not interact when they are two-three years of age. They are likely to suffer from intellectual disability and need assistance in toileting, reading, and their everyday activities. If the children show such kind of behaviour then make sure that it is time for the child to take to the psychiatrist and counselors,” he added.
The children these days are more stressed. “Pressure from parents to perform better in studies, peer pressure are some of the causes of mental health problems in children. Relations and love affairs among adolescents are also some of the problems that cause mental problems. Some adolescents are also involved in substance abuse as they are unable to handle the pressures. Parents are also to blame as they are unable to give time for their children,” informed the doctor.
Parents shouldn’t vent out their frustrations on children. They should listen to the problems of their children, spend time with them and should be friendly. As parents sense any kind of behavioural changes in their children they should be immediately be taken to psychiatrists and psychologists for the immediate counseling and treatment.
A version of this article appears in print on February 18, 2018 of The Himalayan Times.