Feeling of loneliness and depression has become common in adolescents of school nowadays. School kids are at great risk of getting depressed due to various reasons in their school life. Students residing in hostels for their school studies top the chart of risk. Previously the school life was joyful and not so burdening like today’s culture of appearing in competitive exams and increased pressure from parents and teachers to score good in it. This article opens up to the declining mental health of school kids and some natural tips to prevent or overcome it.
Talking about mental health has always been a social stigma, usually in countries like India where it is usually ignored and not thought to be worth talking about. But it’s high time to talk about it as loneliness and depression in school kids is at peak unlike previous times. Unfortunately children with poor mental health are either ignored or scolded for showing so called non interest in studies but only few parents try to inspect the cause behind it. School kids suffering from depression usually go untreated.
School going children, generally those in their teenage years, are in the most sensitive age of their life where everything, be it major or minor affects them greatly. Today’s school culture is much different from earlier times like earlier there was not so much pressure for them to get selected in competitive exams. Also the studying schedules were not this much hectic and tiring. These things can make them lonely and eventually depressed.
Reasons For School Kids To Get Lonely And Depressed
Along with this there can be few other major reasons for school kids to get lonely and depressed. Let’s find out
- Social Media- School kids of today’s generation are exposed to both the issues, issues which are coming from past generations like studies pressure and issues which were unknown previously like social media. Advancing technology and growing social media factors have emerged as difficulty in disguise. Social media is not only a platform to share your posts and statuses but people especially the teens and younger generation have started to live up to its mark. They match their lives with someone else on social media as per the photos and videos and get depressed on finding themselves down to them. Holding perfection on social media have become their life’s aim and eventually all these things lead to decline in studies, relationships and extracurricular activities developing stress and depression.
- Lack of coping skills- We want to protect our children from anything bad which happens in their life. This can be helpful for them to a certain extent but is much worse than we can think. When they are protected in all aspects of life, they do not know how to tackle disappointments and failure for a long period of time. Hence when suddenly they come across something which disappoints them or fails in something, they are not able to deal with it and get depressed.
- Growth is still going on- School kids are still in the age of growing and have not developed completely in many aspects. Emotionally they are not strong which makes them vulnerable to get lonely, sad, anxious and stressed easily. Also they are in the age when so many changes in the body are going on, physically. This makes them a bit confused at some level. This confusion and incomplete development of emotional factors make them highly vulnerable to depression.
- Bullying in schools- Nowadays this bullying of each other (usually the older students bullying younger one) have become a trend. Seniors or students with some advantage (Physically strong) bully the other kid who is younger to them or not so strong physically. School kids who get bullied are at high risk of getting depressed. Children who bully others have also increased chances of getting depressed.
- No outdoors- Today school kids spend more time on screen or while studying for their school homework, exams or competitive exams. This has left them with no spare time to go out and enjoy themselves in an outdoor environment. Earlier school going kids used to go out to play for hours and hours after school which relieved their academic stress and refreshed their minds so that they can do their homework and study with a more fresh mind. But now the scenario is upside down and children are limited to their rooms or homes.
Prevention Of Loneliness And Depression
It is very important to talk to your child about mental health and notice any kind of change in their behavior. Usually school kids when they are in their teenage years are more reserved and do not share much about their personal lives. So it is your duty to make them talk by keeping a healthy and friendly bond with them. You should talk to your child about their daily happenings while they are at school and even at home, if anything is bothering them. Depression can be sulking and your kid can drown in it if not helped on time.
However there are certain tips that can help you prevent loneliness and depression in your kids and maintain their mental health.
- Promote their basic health which will eventually help in maintaining their mental health. Ensure their healthy diet, good sleep, regular exercise as these things will maintain their physiological functioning of the body and prevent their body from bad effects of stress and anxiety also will engage them in a good routine.
- Limit their screen time and encourage playing outdoor games with family and friends. This will help in developing a positive connection with others as well as their minds will get refreshed and recharged to study. Praising for good behavior and pointing out the bad one will help them in developing their self strength.
- Do not keep cables, long ropes, knives or guns in the house or keep them locked up as depressed people also can develop suicidal tendencies. Hence, must be cautious and preventive.
- Do not over pressurize them to score high marks in school exams or competitive exams as their stress tolerance level is much lower than adults. Praise them for getting average passing marks, encourage them more to do and on failures talk to them politely about what has gone wrong and ways to correct it.
- Do not ignore the constant crankiness or laziness by thinking that it’s just made up. Try to talk about it, about anything that is troubling them. Constant grief, sadness, anxiety, not wanting to go out or socialize can be signs of depression.
- If you are a teacher, you can help school kids to prevent depression and loneliness in several ways. Do not hesitate to talk about mental health and its issues with them as educating them about it will help kids to know the early signs and symptoms and causes. If you will build a healthy bond with these kids, they will tell you about bullying or other things troubling them in school.
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School kids are very commonly affected by loneliness and depression nowadays and this graph has shown these drastic changes due to the causes discussed above. Dealing with depression in kids can be a difficult task but being alert and educated about it can help you a lot.