MU research shows adults have difficulty recognizing depression in children

1 year 5 months 3 weeks ago Thursday, August 30 2018 Aug 30, 2018 Thursday, August 30, 2018 3:54:00 PM CDT August 30, 2018 in News
By: By: Celine Pence, KOMU 8 Reporter
loading

COLUMBIA - Researchers at the University of Missouri found differences in opinion that teachers, parents and children have about whether or not children are depressed.

They found children in second and third grades are more likely to see themselves as depressed than their parents and teachers. Children showing mild to severe signs of depression are also three times more likely to have skills deficits.

"We've looked at it in a unique way to better understand how adults see child depression, and how they sometimes don't see it," said Keith Herman, professor in the MU College of Education. "What we've learned is that even though adults, teachers and parents may not be good at detecting whether kids are sad or having other symptoms of depression, they actually are pretty good at identifying other things that go along with being depressed."

Herman said childhood depression is a major public health problem that can lead to lifelong consequences. He learned from other research that a lot of the time, childhood depression goes unnoticed.

"The vast majority of them are not getting services for their depression. I'm really interested in ways to help adults and school personnel identify the kids that can benefit from services," he said.

Of the students, teachers and parents in the study, 66 percent of all three groups agreed the children were not depressed. However, the other third found children thought they were depressed, while the teachers and parents did not think the children were.

Jessica Tappana, the founder and a full time therapist at Aspire Counseling, says many parents, teachers and other loving adults don't think a child could possibly be depressed at that point in life.

"It's not always the result of something terrible. It can be a chemical imbalance, she said. "Younger kids don't have the skills to cope, so it can leave them to question themselves. If an adult says it's not that bad, then they might wonder, 'what's wrong with me?'"

She said sometimes symptoms can be mislabeled as something we think of more quickly, like ADD, ADHD or even physical problems.

Tappana said symptoms of depression in children can include inability to concentrate, irritation, sleep changes, withdrawal, a lack of interest, hopelessness, changes in appetite and any mention of suicide. She said it's important for parents to be aware of these symptoms and take notice of changes in a child.

"If there are any thing that doesn't feel right, reach out and ask a mental health professional. Go with your gut. It doesn't mean something is wrong, but seek a professional opinion," she said.

Herman said it's important to catch depression early.

"In cases where parents aren't sure or teachers aren't sure, we encourage them to use findings from this study and other studies to start getting their antenna up when they start to see kids who are struggling academically or socially to ask the follow up question: might this child not only be struggling in these areas, but what's the emotion toll that's having on the child?" he said.

More News

Grid
List
BRUNSWICK - After a year of record-breaking flooding, neighbors in Brunswick hope they don't see a repeat this summer. ... More >>
10 hours ago Sunday, February 23 2020 Feb 23, 2020 Sunday, February 23, 2020 8:22:00 PM CST February 23, 2020 in News
LINN - A lot of the times it's hard to know the affect you'll have on someone until after it's... More >>
11 hours ago Sunday, February 23 2020 Feb 23, 2020 Sunday, February 23, 2020 7:08:00 PM CST February 23, 2020 in Sports
BOONVILLE — Community members in Boonville gathered Sunday in support of moving the Boonslick Regional Library (BRL) Cooper County Branch... More >>
12 hours ago Sunday, February 23 2020 Feb 23, 2020 Sunday, February 23, 2020 6:15:00 PM CST February 23, 2020 in News
COLUMBIA - The University of Missouri College of Agriculture, Food and Natural Resources (CAFNR) will celebrate the 150th anniversary of... More >>
13 hours ago Sunday, February 23 2020 Feb 23, 2020 Sunday, February 23, 2020 5:23:00 PM CST February 23, 2020 in News
AP — State attorneys general are finding a national settlement over the toll of opioids to be elusive, as some... More >>
19 hours ago Sunday, February 23 2020 Feb 23, 2020 Sunday, February 23, 2020 11:17:32 AM CST February 23, 2020 in News
COLUMBIA - Dozens of boy scouts and girl scouts showed up for water safety event at Hickman High School Sunday... More >>
20 hours ago Sunday, February 23 2020 Feb 23, 2020 Sunday, February 23, 2020 10:34:00 AM CST February 23, 2020 in News
SEDALIA — A 49-year-old man was taken to the University of Missouri hospital via air ambulance after sustaining a gunshot... More >>
21 hours ago Sunday, February 23 2020 Feb 23, 2020 Sunday, February 23, 2020 9:25:40 AM CST February 23, 2020 in News
FULTON - Police arrested a 44 year old Fulton man after he attempted to unlawfully enter a home twice, assaulted... More >>
1 day ago Sunday, February 23 2020 Feb 23, 2020 Sunday, February 23, 2020 6:10:00 AM CST February 23, 2020 in News
SEDALIA- Police officers in Sedalia responded to a report of a man lying in the roadway near the 700 block... More >>
1 day ago Saturday, February 22 2020 Feb 22, 2020 Saturday, February 22, 2020 11:01:00 PM CST February 22, 2020 in News
COLUMBIA - Dozens of MU students gathered to raise money for cancer research Saturday. Mizzou's Relay for Life raised... More >>
1 day ago Saturday, February 22 2020 Feb 22, 2020 Saturday, February 22, 2020 6:41:00 PM CST February 22, 2020 in News
JEFFERSON CITY — Police arrested three people after a Saturday afternoon robbery led to a car chase, according to a... More >>
1 day ago Saturday, February 22 2020 Feb 22, 2020 Saturday, February 22, 2020 5:46:00 PM CST February 22, 2020 in News
JEFFERSON CITY — Missouri voters legalized medical marijuana in 2018, but some lawmakers are worried about what that could... More >>
1 day ago Saturday, February 22 2020 Feb 22, 2020 Saturday, February 22, 2020 4:53:00 PM CST February 22, 2020 in News
ST. LOUIS (AP) — Missouri may have shed its unwanted image as the meth lab capital of the U.S.,... More >>
1 day ago Saturday, February 22 2020 Feb 22, 2020 Saturday, February 22, 2020 4:21:00 PM CST February 22, 2020 in News
COLUMBIA - Columbia is getting a break from winter weather this weekend and many residents are taking advantage of it.... More >>
1 day ago Saturday, February 22 2020 Feb 22, 2020 Saturday, February 22, 2020 4:21:00 PM CST February 22, 2020 in News
REEDS SPRING, Mo. – Students in the Reeds Spring School District will begin a four-day school week next school... More >>
1 day ago Saturday, February 22 2020 Feb 22, 2020 Saturday, February 22, 2020 4:11:55 PM CST February 22, 2020 in A Brighter Tomorrow
COLUMBIA – Several First Ward neighborhood associations hosted a town hall forum Saturday with city council candidates to discuss housing,... More >>
1 day ago Saturday, February 22 2020 Feb 22, 2020 Saturday, February 22, 2020 4:07:00 PM CST February 22, 2020 in News
Black LGBTQ youth are less likely to receive mental health... More >>
1 day ago Saturday, February 22 2020 Feb 22, 2020 Saturday, February 22, 2020 3:51:00 PM CST February 22, 2020 in A Brighter Tomorrow
COLUMBIA — In an effort to contain the novel coronavirus, the Chinese government has canceled a number of exams this... More >>
1 day ago Saturday, February 22 2020 Feb 22, 2020 Saturday, February 22, 2020 2:56:57 PM CST February 22, 2020 in News
Columbia, MO
Broken Clouds 44°
8am 44°
9am 44°
10am 44°
11am 45°