Just like adults, children and young adults can also feel sad, hopeless, or worried. This is a normal part of being human; however, if your child is always sad, lost, or anxious, this can be a cause for concern. You mustn’t just ignore these symptoms, as they could be signs of depression or anxiety.
Here at North Woodmere Medical Care in Valley Stream, NY, Dr. Stacy Hausmann works with families who have children dealing with mild to moderate depression and anxiety. It’s also essential to understand the signs and symptoms of depression and anxiety in adults. Her mission is to provide children and young adults with quality medical and after-hours care, along with promoting healthy living and preventing disease by providing mental health, nutrition, health, wellness, and obesity and weight management to children through adults.
Here’s what you should know about both adult and childhood anxiety and depression.
Signs of Anxiety in Children and Adults
Anxiety is a normal part of life, but when children and adults notice their anxiety affecting their work, social, and family life, that they should seek treatment from their physician. Anxiety disorders cause repeated episodes of intense emotions that create high amounts of emotional distress.
There are a few different anxiety disorders, including generalized anxiety disorder (GAD), social anxiety disorder, separation anxiety disorder, and specific phobias. There are many more that your physician can help you understand.
Here are a few signs of adult anxiety disorder:
- Excessive sweating
- Increased heart rate
- The urge to avoid anxiety-inducing situations
- Stomach problems
- Inability to control excessive worry
Signs of Depression in Children and Young Adults
While you never want to see your child sad, this emotion is one that everyone will experience; however, if your child or a young adult has been displaying signs of depression for more than two weeks, it’s time to speak with their physician or a professional trained in mental health. These signs include:
- Changes in sleep (sleeping too much or not sleeping enough)
- Lose in energy
- Difficulty functioning at school
- Appetite changes (overeating or loss of appetite)
- Lack of enjoyment in things that once brought them pleasure
- Avoiding people even family or close friends
- Feeling hopeless, sad, or worthless
- Increased irritability and mood swings
- Increased guilt
- Trouble concentrating
- Self-harm or harm to others
- Thoughts of suicide or death
Signs of Depression in Adults
Adults with depression experience overwhelming and persistent feelings of hopelessness and sadness. They commonly lose interest in the things that they used to enjoy. Similar to anxiety, when symptoms of depression start to affect all aspects of your life, talk to a medical professional. Be on the lookout for any of the above signs as well as these changes:
- Frustration and outbursts over trivial matters
- Lack of energy, with small tasks taking a monumental effort
- Feelings of emptiness and sadness
- Troubles sleeping
- Lack of appetite or cravings for unhealthy foods
- Trouble concentrating
- Constant thoughts of harming yourself or suicide
Bringing Your Child in For an Evaluation
If your child or a young adult is displaying any of the telltale symptoms of anxiety or depression, it’s essential to talk with a healthcare provider trained in diagnosing and treating depression and anxiety to determine the next steps. Dr. Hausmann applies evidence-based medicine to assess, diagnose and treat children and young adults with mild to moderate depression and anxiety. Your treatment plan may include talk therapy, medication or both. If necessary, we can provide you with additional proper resources and mental health referrals. This ensures that you get the evaluation and comprehensive treatment that you need to manage your anxiety or depression for the long term.
We can also work with families to determine ways to improve their child’s lifestyle (e.g., coping skills, dietary changes, regular exercise, decreased screen time and improved quality of sleep) to manage symptoms better and improve mental outlook. Dr. Hausmann’s goal is to help her patients view situations with a positive outlook.
If your child or a young adult is showing symptoms of depression or anxiety, it’s essential to talk with a health care provider trained in diagnosing and managing mild to moderate depression and anxiety as soon as possible. Call North Woodmere Medical Care at (516) 791-9010 to schedule your appointment with Dr. Stacy Hausmann in Valley Stream, NY. We see patients from the Five Towns (Cedarhurst, Woodmere, Lawrence, Hewlett, and Inwood), Far Rockaway, and other communities.