Building Self Esteem in Depressed Children

Build Self-Esteem

Self esteem refers to the way people view themselves; for example, whether they feel important, confident or they feel worthless. Its degree can vary from low to high but is likely to remain more stable in most children. Self-esteem can play a very crucial role in influencing the progress of depression in children. While some researchers believe that depression on its own triggers low self-esteem in children, others insist that low self-esteem predisposes a child to the risk of developing depression. The former hold that the occurrence of a depressive episode decreases the child’s self-esteem, thus increasing the likelihood that another depressive episode may occur in future.

Vulnerability of Children to Depression

Most of the recent research shows that some people are more likely to experience depression than others. Low self-esteem is recognized as one of the potential causes of depression especially when it manifests during a stressful event such as loss of loved one. High self-esteem is considered as a reliable defensive barrier against depression.

Signs of Fading Sense Of Worth

The question here is how you will be able to know that your child is struggling with low self-esteem. Research indicates that children struggling with low self-esteem tend to abuse alcohol or other drugs and engage in risky behaviors such as unprotected sex, much more than their peers with higher self-esteem. These children frequently comment negatively about themselves regardless of whether it is a minor mistake that was done.

A child with low self-esteem suddenly becomes afraid of trying new things as he or she used to do. This signifies that they no longer feel capable enough or competent to shine at new engagements. They overlook some opportunities because they doubt whether they are good enough to perform the task.

Your child may also transform in many other ways. For example, he or she might withdraw from family and friends, have a decreased or increased appetite or avoid most of their friends. It’s important as a parent to examine these changes in behavior and evaluate whether shattered self-esteem is to blame. At this point it’s recommendable to seek the assistance of a therapist so as to get to the bottom of what’s going on, advises Southeastern Arizona Behavioral Services, Inc.

Helping a Child Overcome Low Self-Esteem

If your child exhibits any sign of depression, it is very important to seek treatment for him or her immediately, as depression is a serious mental illness. If depression is detected, early treatment provides your child with the best possibility of recovery, and reduces the probability of a relapse.

It isn't always the case that that a child with low self-esteem will become depressed, though it is advisable to learn the signs of low self-esteem. Encourage, support, love and show interest in your child’s activities since doing so is integral to his or her emotional development and self esteem. If you do not observe any improvement in spite of your best efforts to build your child’s self-worth, it’s advisable to visit a professional child psychiatrist to eliminate the possibility of depression and learn how to build the child’s perception of himself or herself.


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