Most People think that mental illness is only related to adults. As the society runs, the act of balancing a healthy family life and work life becomes difficult leading to adults suffering from anxiety and depression. It is true that adults tend to face mental health problems, however, the mental health of children is of equal importance.
While most adults strive to fight against daily stress and concerns, we often tend to overlook the mental health of our children. Most of us assume that childhood is the most relaxed time. It is very unlikely that children could suffer from mental health problems and illnesses. The student life is getting complex day by day. Childhood should be a happy time in a person’s life. Dealing with mental and emotional illness, however, can put a hindrance on this carefree time. It can also affect and lead to more problems in adulthood.
Children can experience the same amount of stress and depression as an adult, the symptoms may differ from that of the adults. For example, instead of becoming quiet, a child suffering from depression may have unexplainable outbursts and behavioural concerns.
There may be a number of causes for mental and emotional concerns in children. These may include things such as meeting new people, dealing with the divorce of parents, death, grief, abuse, poverty, problems in school and trouble with peers. However, some disorders may be hereditary and caused due to genetic factors as well.
Child Counseling or Youth Counseling is a type of counseling that focuses on children suffering from mental disorders or behavioural concerns. Guidance is needed to help the children for optimum achievement and adequate adjustments in the varied situations of life. Child Counselors can help the children become mentally and emotionally stable, which can help them become healthier and happier adults.
Counselors today work with children using different types of therapy such as Play therapy, individual counseling, group therapy and Art and craft therapy. Through these activities, children tend to reveal a lot of their thoughts and emotions and the counselor can tap on the concerns as well. Children today are aware of the counseling services provided to them at schools, however, they also have stereotypes about visiting a counselor as they don’t wish to fall under the tag of “crazy”. This is where as parents we need to make them understand the difference between being crazy and the reality. This can only happen when we ourselves understand that Counseling is a medium through which they can help themselves and lead a healthy life.
Children face various issues at school right from body shaming to bullying to the peer pressure. Examinations are meant to make children understand how they become better in a subject, the scenario today, however, leads them to face stress and depression due to low scores.
Child counselors work for the children and with the children. The ambiance in a counseling session is made more friendly and comfortable rather than a setting wherein they adapt fears about speaking. Counseling helps children express better and feel secured while expressing their thoughts and needs apart from their near and dear ones. Just as adults, children today also feel pressurized to live according to the norms of society based on their age groups. Sometimes the need to fit in the group increases and inability to do so leads to disturbing thoughts and self-doubt. This which in turn affects their self-concept and character building.