yes, therapy helps!
11 symptoms of mental illness in children

11 symptoms of mental illness in children

December 3, 2022

Childhood is the stage of life in which health is a major cause for concern. The little ones do not always know how to express very well what kind of discomfort they are feeling, and also, as childhood is the time when more disorders and diseases emerge in general, it is very important to pay attention in case symptoms are detected.

The same goes for mental health. The appearance of most of the disorders and neurological disorders most frequent occurs during the first years of life, and is very important know how to detect mental illness in boys and girls to intervene as soon as possible so that there are less chances that their negative effects gain strength and pose a threat to the well-being of the child.


Detecting symptoms of mental illness in childhood

It must be clear that knowing how to detect signs of mental illness is a task that always has to lead to medical and psychological examinations. The diagnoses of mental disorders can only be made by professionals accredited , and neither the concern of the parents nor the child's complaints are a valid reason to start improvised treatments outside the health system.

At the same time, we must also bear in mind that it is normal for children to feel bad from time to time or perform behaviors that may seem strange to us from time to time. The odds of this having to do with mental illnesses have to do with:


  • If the appearance of these behaviors is more or less abrupt .
  • If it matches a traumatic or stressful event or injury .
  • The intensity of these symptoms and the degree to which they move away from what is considered to be normal .
  • If these behaviors can be a wear on the well-being of the boy or girl or of someone around him .

When considering whether the small or small can be developing a mental illness is important to apply common sense and be clear that the last word always have the clinical psychologists and psychiatrists.

Some of the symptoms to consider are:

1. Tendency to self-harm

The fact that a boy or girl try to injure yourself or hit your head against hard objects It is reason to go to a specialist. However, it is necessary to reflect before on the extent to which wounds occur is the final intention of a behavior. For example, if a baby tries to climb down stairs on all fours, it does not mean that he wants to fall down on them; he simply does not know that this can be dangerous.


Self-injury usually has to do with an inability to manage stress properly, which leads to pain to distract from other thoughts that are even more unpleasant.

  • Related article: "Non Suicidal Self-injury: Who does it affect and why is it produced?"

2. Sudden mood swings

Very sudden mood swings are also indicators of mental illness, especially if it is not possible to relate them to objective events that occur around them and occur erratically. However, we must also consider that the little ones cry very easily, since that is part of their level of neurological maturation.

3. The rejection of one's appearance

The non-acceptance of one's body at an early age can be a symptom of mental illness in boys and girls. However, in cases such as gender dysphoria, it is considered that the causes are fundamentally biopsychosocial and are not caused by discomfort that has to do with the functioning of your body in itself.

Complaints about one's weight may also be indications of developing eating disorders if they are persistent and have implications for the amount of food that is allowed.

4. Irregularities at lunchtime

Eat very little or binge eating it can be a sign of psychological functions that function abnormally if this poses a risk to the child's health. As of puberty, the pressure to build an identity that is socially acceptable can push young people to make great sacrifices to look good.

5. Explosions of violence

Frequent bursts of anger can be the result of a neurochemical maladjustment in the nervous system that affects the mood, or, seen from another perspective, can be the result of a pattern of behavior that has been learned inadvertently despite not being useful or effective.

6. The tendency to hurt others

Inflicting bullying or injuring or killing animals is also a cause for concern, and it is necessary to implement corrective programs so that this behavior can not be further developed.It may be due to an inability to empathize with the rest, or there may also be some problem that generates so much stress that leads the person to act impulsively.

7. Symptoms of disconnection with reality

This is a group of symptoms that are difficult to detect, since children tend to show magical thinking and enjoy fantasizing about fictitious situations . The key here is to know if that magical thought that will disappear as your brain matures poses a risk to your well-being or someone else's, and if the fantasies you use to play are something more than that or not.

In the case of imaginary friends , it is easy for the child to refuse to admit that he does not really exist despite being aware of the truth, simply so as not to break with the appearance of fantasy. In these cases it is good to inquire about whether the imaginary friend does things that the little one or the little one finds unexpected, that cause problems that can not be controlled.

8. Trend to isolation

Many children prefer to play alone, but some of them do so not because of shyness, but because they feel bad if there are people nearby, in any context. These cases can be a reason for psychological consultation, since it could be a sign of Autism Spectrum Disorders.

9. Serious difficulties at school

Having difficulties in school may have to do with learning disorders such as dyslexia or dyscalculia, or it can be the consequence of serious mental illness (Although, of course, in many cases it is a false alarm in this regard). Childhood is a stage in which developmental disorders can leave a very negative impression on the subsequent evolution of the person if they are not addressed in an effective way.

10. Lack of motivation

The existence of an extremely passive attitude and a clear lack of initiative to carry out very elementary actions It can be a sign of mental illness. Specifically, it is associated with depressive disorders.

11. Constant complaints about pain or discomfort

Of course, pain is an element that has a lot to say in the detection of diseases. Sometimes they may refer to a headache that may be caused by an abnormal functioning of certain psychological functions related to perception or concentration .


Schizophrenia Symptoms : Signs of Schizophrenia in Children With ADHD (December 2022).


Similar Articles