Locating and securing mental health treatment services that are not only capable of improving one’s mental well being but which exhibit a high potential to affect great emotional and mental good can be challenging, but children and adolescents are most often faced with having a mental health professional appointed to them by someone else. That is, if they’re able to secure treatment at all; while around thirteen percent of eight to fifteen year olds participating in a national survey on health and nutrition were indicated for symptoms of issues classified in the DSM-IV, less that fifty one percent had received any kind of mental health treatment within the last year, according to an analysis performed at the National Institute of Mental Health.
The survey found that a significant number of children were affected by mental health issues concerning mood, behavior, and other concerns, with a particularly large number expressing symptoms of attention deficit issues. Children with such issues, however, were among those with the highest rates of recent treatment, where as those indicated for mood concerns such as anxiety were least likely to have been treated within the year. Boys, as well as older children, were on average more likely to be treated for their mental health concerns. The program that produced the survey involved personal examinations and information divulged by participating parents.
Though the challenge of securing quality mental health care is becoming more prominent in national discussions on the topic of treatment, the need to educate parents and caregivers about mental health concerns among children and adolescents is made more clear by the survey and its subsequent analysis. With greater attention paid to the needs of children both in the classroom and at home, the mental health community may help to foster happier beginnings to more prosperous lives.
© Copyright 2009 by By Noah Rubinstein, LMFT, LMHC, therapist in Olympia, Washington. All Rights Reserved. Permission to publish granted to GoodTherapy.org.
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