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Symptoms of Depression in Children

Topic Overview

Children who are depressed may have the same symptoms as adults. But adults may believe that these symptoms are normal in children. Some signs that may alert adults that children are depressed include:

  • Being irritable and crying for no reason you can see.
  • Avoiding friends and social events. Having depression makes it difficult for children to make and keep friendships.
  • Doing poorly in school or refusing to go to school.
  • Paying little attention to how they look.
  • Having behavior problems such as temper tantrums, becoming sexually active, or using alcohol or illegal drugs.
  • Not getting along well with parents. Children who are depressed may avoid hugs and other signs of affection from their parents.
  • Physical complaints such as headache or stomachache with no cause you can see.

Credits

Current as of: September 23, 2020

Author: Healthwise Staff
Medical Review: John Pope MD - Pediatrics
Kathleen Romito MD - Family Medicine
David A. Brent MD - Child and Adolescent Psychiatry