TERRE HAUTE, Ind. (WTWO/WAWV) – Mental health experts say mental health has always been a problem in children but the pandemic exacerbated those issues, especially in children.
Just like many people students and children sometimes deal with the struggles of mental health. Those issues can stem from different things such as bullying. Though a lot of bullying takes place in person over the years social media has ramped up and many kids experience cyber bulling as well. Other problems have also become more problematic due to the pandemic.
“Even a healthy child that was thriving in school,” Christina Crist, interim director for FSA Counseling. “You take them away from their sports, their education, all of those things that made children thrive and you stick them at home in isolation, nobody’s going to do right with that.”
Many children develop a condition that affects many people every year especially going into colder months.
“Seasonal affective disorder can have an impact on someone’s mental health at the point that someone who use to like to be around people is now struggling to be around people,” Missy Burton, clinical supervisor coordinator for the Hamilton Center said.
When Crist speaks to local high schools students she works to connect with them by sharing how her life has been impacted.
“I show slides of my daughter. I want them to see someone that is their age,” Crist said. “Their age age that went to their school, lived in their town and made the choice to die by suicide.”
There are different available options to help children including FSA Counseling and the Hamilton Center but sometimes providing help or asking for help requires tough conversations.
“I just think it’s important no matter what topic no matter what time of year we’re looking at that we watch out for each other,” Burton said. “That if we have a loved one or a friend and we see a change in their functioning that we just get brave enough to have a hard conversation.”
Reaching out to an adult or family can be difficult but she adds that kids need to find someone they trust because communication is vital in preventing further issues.