Mental health is an important part of a child’s overall health and has a complex yet interactive relationship with their physical well-being and their ability to succeed everywhere be it at school, at work or in society. Both mental and physical health affect how we feel, think, and act on both the inside and outside.
If someone is mentally healthy during their childhood that means they are reaching emotional and developmental milestones and learning healthy social habits and also, how to cope when there are difficulties in life. The children who are mentally healthy can function well in their school, at their home, in their communities and thus, have a positive quality of life.
What is Mental Health?
Mental health is not just the lack of a mental disorder. Children who have a diagnosed mental disorder might vary in strengths and weaknesses in their quality of life and in how they are coping and developing, as compared to children who do not have a mental disorder and have good mental health. The identification of specific mental disorders and a child’s evaluation of mental health are the two ways to understand how well that child is doing.
Poor mental health or mental disorders among a kid is explained as some serious changes in the way he/she typically behaves, learns and handles their emotions, which cause distress or problems getting through their day. There are many children who go through the experience of worries and fears and as a result, display disruptive behaviours. If their symptoms are persistent and serious and happen to interfere with home, school and their play activities, then the child may be suffering from a mental disorder.
For instance, if there is an overweight young tyke who gets teased about his heavyweight may be put down and become depressed, he also may not be willing to play with others and exercise, which gradually leads to his poorer physical well-being and might result in poor mental health. These kinds of issues have long-term effects on the skills of children and youth to reach their potential as well as consequences for the education, health, labour and criminal justice systems in our society.
Treatment of Children’s Mental Health
Childhood mental health disorders can be managed and treated as there are several treatment options based on the most and best current medical evidence. Doctors and parents should work closely with everyone who is involved in that child’s treatment, namely, therapists, teachers, coaches and other members of the family.
To guide the child towards success, it is important for all the health professionals, parents and educators to take full advantage and help of the resources available. For many families, the appropriate services after an early diagnosis of their children can make a great difference in the lives of their kid having mental disorders.
Role of Psychology in Mental Health of Children
There has been a lot of contribution of the researchers in psychology to the development of more operative treatment and prevention of mental health disorders in kids through programs working at these different levels below:
- Individual – Counselling or therapy for kids with mental health disorders.
- Family – Parent education on the requirements of children at each stage of development.
- School – Strategies for teachers for compelling classroom management
- Peer – Peer-assisted learning programs that target improving reading, science and math.
- Community – Violence prevention programs administered through community or recreational centres.
- Systemic – Coordination of services in the health, education, juvenile justice, and child protection systems.
In this way, one can take care of their children’s mental health.