A Guide for Parents of Mentally ill children

Childhood mental illness is a complicated, confusing and difficult challenge that should be handled by trained medical professionals. Experts advise parents to follow these guidelines in observing their children:

Watch for anxiety. It can be an early sign of depression.

Talk to your kids. They often will tell you how they are doing.

Eat dinner together.

Trust your gut instincts about your own child.

Share concerns with your pediatrician.

Learn what you can about a diagnosed disorder.

Take care of yourself.

"Today's parent lives in an era of diagnosis. Even if a child isn't coping with a mental disorder, fear often lurks in the back of a parent's mind, put there partly by a drumbeat of persistent media coverage.

"Sometimes it seems treatment is struggling to catch up and adapt to this fast-changing and expanding group of children. Health professionals seemingly worry about everything: misdiagnosis, underdiagnosis, overdiagnosis and use of medication.

"There even is plenty of debate about what childhood mental illness is and how to treat it, though parents are taking a greater role in treatment."

-- From the Seattle P-I, March 7, 2008



  1. My child bing Ill, I've come to find a great and informative book called Parenting Child with Health Issues.
    Along with the website, it's full of info including tips, tools, and tactics.
    I have learned to deal with my frustration, and learning how to communicate better.
    These things seem to sound easy to overcome, but easier said then done.


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