MENTAL HEALTH CHECK-UPS FOR CHILDREN
Posted by Improving Lives Counseling | Articles
The National Academy of Sciences reports about one in five children in the United States suffers from some sort of emotional or behavioral condition, exclusive of diagnosed birth defects, a fear of violence, social injustices, phobias, discrimination, tragedy, anxiety, a parent’s deployment, environmental factors, media, drug abuse, and stress which are noted contributors in the years 2000-2016. With women waiting later in life to begin families and our senior population growing faster than ever, more children, adolescents, and teens are experiencing the loss of a grandparent – often one cared for in the home. We constantly hear we are living in “different times” yet a discussion of how these “times” affect a child’s mental health is often avoided by those outside the mental health community.
Despite heroes, movie stars, sports figures, and the “rich and famous” admitting to – and highly suggesting mental health check-ups; the post-war, baby boomer, and X generations cling to mental illness stigmas. In 2014 Psychological Science in the Public Interest reported over 60 million Americans are thought to experience mental illness in a given year: “Despite the availability of effective evidence-based treatment, about 40% of individuals with serious mental illness do not receive care and many who begin an intervention fail to complete it.” Social, behavioral, and mental disorders effect education, relationships, employment, and physical health. Often children, adolescents, and teens suffering anxiety, depression, schizophrenia, and bipolar disorder aren’t diagnosed until in crisis or well into adulthood. Improving Lives Counseling Services urges you to take your child’s mental health as seriously as you take their physical health.
Unless a child is consistently misbehaving, unruly in the classroom, extremely aggressive, withdrawn, or in crisis, few parents are prepared to recognize the symptoms of mental disorders. Many find the words, anxiety disorder, personality disorder, social phobia, and mental illness uncomfortable when discussing a family member – hard to hear or accept when discussing a child. Many believe in preventive medicine yet avoid any suggestion that their child is in need of a mental health check-up. ADHD, pervasive development disorders, eating disorders, disruptive behavior disorders, and mood disorders commonly detected in children are easily diagnosed (or ruled-out) and treated by our team of professional counselors and therapists. Prevention and Early Intervention, Therapeutic Care, Crisis Services and Consultation Services are offered in individual, couple, family, and group sessions.
Although the exact cause of mental disorders and illnesses is not known, genome-wide studies have found a number of mental illnesses are inherited traits. Why wait? You have the opportunity to know if consistent complaining about school, friends, and events is normal complaining or the symptom of a social disorder or if failure to eat vegetables, or a preference to stay in his/her room is a teen being a “teen”, or early symptoms of a behavioral disorder. The mental health professionals of Improving Lives Counseling Services offer school, home, office, and community-based services. We are available evenings and weekends, offer online video counseling sessions, and our services are free to clients and families with SoonerCare Title 19. There is no long waiting period and our therapy sessions are helpful, fun, and affordable.
As parents you have the opportunity to protect your child from the suffering millions of adults go through; adults who failed to be diagnosed and treated as a child. Health is a state of mind and body. Your children are depending on you. Call us today.