Archive for the 'Children' Category

Depression in Children

December 14th, 2008

The depressed child may pretend to be sick, refuse to go to school, cling to a parent, or worry that the parent may die. Older children may sulk, get into trouble at school, be negative, grouchy, and feel misunderstood. Because normal behaviors vary from one childhood stage to another, it can be difficult to tell whether a child is just going through a temporary “phase” or is suffering from depression. Does your child have the following symptoms?

  • Persistent sadness and/or irritability.
  • Low self-esteem or feelings or worthlessness. A child may make such statements as, “I’m bad. I’m stupid. No one likes me.”
  • Loss of interest in previously enjoyed activities.
  • Change in appetite (either increase or decrease).
  • Change in sleep patterns (either increase or decrease).
  • Difficulty concentrating.
  • Anger and rage
  • Headaches, stomachaches or other physical pains that seem to have no cause.
  • Changes in activity level. The child either becomes more lethargic or more hyperactive.
  • Recurring thoughts of death or suicide

Does your child have most or all of the symptoms listed above?  If so, you can find out more about what the symptoms mean and what can be done about them. Call Counselling, Assessment and Therapy Services at 6397-2721 to make an appointment.

Category: Children

Common Signs of Autism

December 14th, 2008

There are three distinctive behaviors that characterize autism. Autistic children have difficulties with social interaction, problems with verbal and nonverbal communication, and repetitive behaviors or narrow, obsessive interests.

  • Difficulty in making friends with peers
  • Difficulty in initiating or sustaining a conversation with others
  • Absence or impairment of imaginative and social play
  • Difficulty understanding social cues, such as tone of voice or facial expressions, and don’t watch other people’s faces for clues about appropriate behavior.
  • Lack empathy
  • Have stereotyped, repetitive, unusual use of language – echolalia, talking in a high pitch voice
  • Started speaking later than other children and may refer to themselves by name instead of “I” or “me”
  • Restricted patterns of interest that are abnormal in intensity or focus
  • Preoccupation with certain objects or subjects
  • Inflexible adherence to specific routines or rituals
  • Have a reduced sensitivity to pain, abnormally sensitive to sound, touch, or other sensory stimulation
  • Resistance to being cuddled or hugged

Treatment of Autism

Appropriate early intervention is important. Once the diagnosis has been made, the parents, physicians, and specialists should discuss what is best for the child. Special education classes are available for autistic children. Structured, behaviorally-based programs, geared to the child’s developmental level is important and necessary.

A child with autism requires much of the parents’ attention, often affecting the other children in the family. Counseling and support may be helpful for the parents.

If your child has some of these symptoms and you are concerned. Please call us at 6397-2721 for more information.

Category: Children