Thursday, June 07, 2007

Depression, childhood and gender

As well as being painful at the time depressive symptoms in childhood can be linked to a variety of different problems later in life including full-blown depression, school problems, smoking, drinking, drug use, increased sexual activity and suicidal behaviour. Adolescent girls are three to four times more likely to suffer from depression than adolescent boys but little research has been done into the different ways younger children experience depression. A study of 122 10-12 year-olds in the U.S. found that girls internalized their problems and suffered from lower self-esteem whereas boys externalized their problems by behaving badly and were more likely to have problems at school.

Bailey, Mary K. ... [et al] - Patterns of depressive symptoms in children Journal of Child and Adolescent Psychiatric Nursing 20(2), 86-95

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