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Psychological Treatment for Depressed Students

Uploaded by tyson_626 on Feb 02, 2005

PSYCHOLOGICAL TREATMENT FOR DEPRESSED STUDENTS

Psychological Treatment for Depressed Students
Depression in school-age children may be one of the most overlooked and under treated psychological disorders of childhood, presenting a serious mental health problem. Depression in children has become an important issue in research due to its many emotional forms, and its relationship to self-destructive behaviors. Depressive disorders are of particular importance to school psychologists, who are often placed in the best position to identify, refer, and treat depressed children. Procedures need to be developed to identify depression in students to avoid allowing those children struggling with depression to go undetected. Depression is one of the most treatable forms of disorders, with an 80-90% chance of improvement if individuals receive treatment (Dubuque, 1998). On the other hand, if untreated, serious cases of depression in childhood can be severe, long, and interfere with all aspects of development, relationships, school progress, and family life (Janzen, & Saklofske, 1991).

The existence of depression in school-age children was nearly unrecognized until the 1990’s. In the past, depression was thought of as a problem that only adults struggled with, and if children did experience it, they experienced depression entirely different than adults did. Psychologists of the psychoanalytic orientation felt that children were unable to become depressed because their superegos were inadequately developed (Fuller, 1992). More recently, Clarizio and Payette (1990) found that depressed school-age children and depressed adults share the same basic symptoms. In fact, only a few minor differences between childhood and adult depression have been found, including the assumption that with childhood depression, irritable mood may serve as a substitute for the depressed mood criterion (Waterman & Ryan, 1993).

Depression in students has become difficult to treat due to a lack of referrals for treatment, “parental denial, and insufficient symptom identification training” (Ramsey, 1994). In addition, recognizing and diagnosing childhood depression is not a simple task. According to Janzen and Saklofske (1991), depression can develop either suddenly, or over a long period of time, “it may be a brief or long term episode, and may be associated with other disorders such as anxiety”. The presence of a couple of symptoms of depression is not enough to provide a diagnosis. A group of symptoms that co-occur, and accumulate over time should be considered more serious. Depression is classified by severity, duration, and type according to the DSM-IV-TR, published by the American Psychological Association (2000).
According to Callahan...

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Uploaded by:   tyson_626

Date:   02/02/2005

Category:   Psychology

Length:   14 pages (3,100 words)

Views:   5146

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