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Thomas Maples
Understanding Childhood Depression with Dr. Tom

Childhood Depression

A Hypothetical Case Presentation

John is a 16-year-old male that has been recently home-schooled due to the COVID 19 pandemic. In 10th grade, John’s academics were superb, he made the honor roll with a 4.0 GPA, and he was active in high school sports. His passion was volleyball and water polo, and he dreamed of getting into a PAC 10 University and taking part in the Summer Olympics.

Home-school started well for John. In the beginning, he was active in class, attending all assigned work periods, and turned his work in on time. His grades held stable through the end of 10th grade. In the early fall of 11th grade, John’s mother noticed that he would sleep longer, didn’t quite seem to take care of himself the way he used to, and would often roll out of bed right before class and attend in his pajamas.

John’s mother explained that his sleep was off. He would often play on his Playstation gaming system or be on the phone until 1 or 2 in the morning. She feared to have him turn it off because it seemed to be the only point of enjoyment he had throughout the day. By the morning, he would be slow to rise, sluggish at best, seemed to drag, and lacked energy throughout the day. She reported that he gained around 20 lbs. since quarantine began and was drastically concerned about his wellbeing. While John was always social and had many friends, he now seemed to lack interest and direction. His grades were falling drastically.

John’s parents showed great concern, even though they could not discern what could be wrong. Being worried, they had a full blood panel completed, and John’s health was good, even though his Vitamin D and Calcium levels were slightly off. They feared drug use, but John’s panel came up negative for any drugs. They explained that John seemed blasé and was worried that something was wrong with their son.

A Depth Psychological Perspective

Today, I explore the depths of pain that hidden behind the difficulties associated with childhood depression. The above example is a hypothetical situation intended for educational purposes only. However, the treatment perspectives I share in the video are meant for a general audience so that parents can see the signs and symptoms associated with childhood depression. My goal is to educate parents so that no child has to suffer from the symptoms related to more engrained mental health disorders.

Being a therapist, I see great pain spreading through the world. Most recently, this collective pain is due to recent lockdowns and quarantines associated with the global pandemic. Being a parent of two, I know firsthand the effects the global pandemic has had on children’s and parents’ mental health. This article focuses on depression in childhood. However, future articles will help people make sense of systematic ways to fight the debilitating symptoms associated with mental health as we strive to make sense of a world that doesn’t seem to make sense.

Unity, not division, solves problems. As age-old wisdom has often stated, two minds are better than one. However, this is only the case if those minds can unite against a common cause. Let us join in uplifting the emotional health of children, our families, our communities, nations, and even the greater world community. Let us unite to find ways to understand and work with the problems of mental health. Being aware is one-half the battle. Working towards a common aim is the other. I hope you enjoy this segment as we begin to pick apart the symptoms, treatment, and parenting strategies used to combat childhood and adult depression.

Namaste, my friends. May blessings find you along your journey to believe, achieve, and advance confidently in the direction of your dreams.

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