Balancing Work and Family

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Can children be depressed? When faced with this question, the most common response is What does a child have to be depressed about? The fact is that clinical depression is not necessarily caused by any single event in a child’s life; it is often chemical and can be pervasive, long lasting and even life threatening.

8-9% of children between the ages of 10 and 13 suffer at least one episode of major depression with the majority of these children being girls.

Symptoms of depression in children include:

  • Persistent sadness or irritability
  • Low self esteem
  • Loss of interest in fun activities
  • Change in appetite or sleep patterns
  • Difficulty concentrating
  • Physical symptoms (headaches, stomach pain, etc.) with no cause
  • Lethargy
  • Talk of suicide

The most important thing to look for is any type of change from normal behavior or functioning. If your child has a family history of mental illness, chronic illness, loss from deaths, divorce or abandonment and you worry that your child might suffer from depression.

Do you feel that you’re losing your sense of balance between work and family? For help, contact EAP at 757-398-2374 or 1-800-EAP-3257.