See a change in your child’s eating habit? You need to panic!

It is always a challenge to decode children and their emotions. Those little humans have a tough time emoting what they feel and we as parents often tend to misread them.  It is very important for parents to closely monitor their children’s behaviour cues. In fact, simple signs like frequent illness, changes in eat/sleep routine and tiredness can be signs that your kid is depressed and not just ‘sad’.

Here’s what you need to watch out for!

1.    Change in their eating and sleeping habits

When a child is depressed you can be sure to notice an evident change in their eating and sleeping habit. An increased or decreased appetite or sleep is not necessarily a sign of just a physical illness. Mental illness also has a lot to do with the stomach and sleep. So, if you do notice your child eating or sleeping a lot or worse than before, chances are he/she might be depressed.

2.    Losing interest in activities

It’s not just adults who lose interest in activities while they are depressed. Kids go through the same too! Showing decreased interest in things your kid loved doing once upon a time could be a sign of depression, says the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry. So, if you do notice your kid losing interest in his favourite toy, the reason could actually be larger than you actually thought.

3.    They are always tired

When your normally energetic child is suddenly dull and likes to sit in one place, as opposed to playing outdoors, you definitely need to be concerned. Depressed kids prefer watching TV, sitting on a couch to playing outside with their friends and siblings.

4.    They cry more

Kids cry and there are no two ways about it. But, depressed kids cry a little more. In fact, they find it difficult to manage their emotions and always break down, even for little things. So, the next time you shut your kid for crying for petty issues, make sure you have done your research.

5.    They are irritable

We all have our bad days and kids do too. But if your child is having a bad, almost every other day, it definitely is not normal. Although meltdowns are common among young children, kids who are likely to be depressed suffer from this at a different level.

6.    They avoid interaction

No, we are not referring to introverts. You can at first glance differentiate between an introvert and a child who deliberately avoids conversations. And according to Psych Central, children who are increasingly withdrawn may be suffering from depression.

7.    They fall ill frequently

If you have been running to the pediatrician more often off late, then its time you took it seriously. Children suffering from depression tend to fall ill more often, even without something big happening to them. According to Everyday Health, chronic headaches and stomach pains without a substantiated physical illness can be a sign of depression.

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