Children as young as 5 being diagnosed as depressed

By Charlotte Summers

According to a shock report released by the National Health Service, children as young as five are being diagnosed with depression and anxiety.

NHS Solent which is in charge of patients from and around Southampton and Portsmouth, today reported that in the 11 months between September 2010 and August 2011, 324 young people had been referred for therapy after being diagnosed as suffering from depression.

On top of this it was reported that a further 378 patients, aged 16 and under, were referred for a range of mental health and emotional disorders including anxiety and obsessive compulsive disorder.

The children were reportedly treated with therapies including anxiety management, art and play therapy and cognitive behaviour therapy.

A child clinical psychologist at Solent NHS Trust reportedly said that there was approximately a ten percent annual increase in the number of young people being diagnosed with depression, anxiety and emotional problems.

This seems to be a country wide pattern, representatives of the NHS Children and Adolescent Mental Health Service in Sussex reported it had around 330 children under the age of 11 and a massive 830 children aged between 12 and 18 year of age currently receiving treatment for symptoms of anxiety and/or depression.

It was concluded by child psychologists and charity workers that the increased number of cases of childhood depression has occurred as a result of parental stress that has arisen in light of the increasing unemployment rates, financial difficulties and substance abuse occurring with their parents.

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