Down in the Dumps: How to Help a Child with Depression

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Published Dec 15, 2016

Do you have a child who always seems down and depressed? He/she may be uninterested in playing with others, spend large amounts of time alone, have a decreased appetite, and/or be failing in school. Whatever the case, you hate to see your child in such a state and want to be there for him.

Be Aware

If your child has clinical depression, don't ever take it lightly. It can be very serious and sometimes even life threatening. Monitor his moods and intervene when he seems to be overly sad or even uncharacteristically angry or anxious for long periods of time.


Lending a sympathetic and listening ear can be of great assistance to a child. Do your best to find out what is bothering him and make yourself available whenever he needs to talk. Be patient as it may take time for him to open up to you and always be sure to conduct your talks privately and confidentially. Do your best to find the cause of his depression. For example, if it is bullying at school, you will be able to take care of the issue by meeting with school administration to address the problem.

Find an Outlet

Getting him involved in sports or exercise may help lessen the severity of depression. Interacting with others, being active, and competing with his peers can sometimes take his mind off his issues. Even something as simple as writing or drawing in a journal can go far in helping him vent his feelings.

Get Professional Help

If nothing can shake your child from his depression, it may be time to seek professional help. Be sure to select someone who specializes in psychiatric care for children. There are many qualified psychiatrists and psychologists who can assist with this issue. Many have learned their professions through reputable colleges and universities. This professional may prescribe medication to assist your child in dealing with his depression. Taken properly, they can go far in rejuvenating his once happy and positive spirit.

Provide Ongoing Care

Depression can come and go over long periods of time, so it is essential that patients have access to therapy on a regular basis. These educated and caring individuals will provide their patient with many options and services. Many have masters in social work online or similar degrees, and are thus very qualified to help your child.

Depression can be a serious issue. Don't hesitate to call on those who are trained and experienced in dealing with such cases. Following the above suggestions will help restore that once happy and content youngster.

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Dixie Somers

Written by Dixie Somers

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