About the Book:
Title: Depression and Your Child: A Guide for Parents and Caregivers
Author: Deborah Serani
Publisher: Rowman and Littlefield Publishers
Published: September 16, 2013
Genre: Self Help, Parenting
Source: Received via Netgalley from the publisher in exchange for an honest review
My Rating: 4 Stars
Seeing your child suffer in any way is a harrowing experience for any parent. Mental illness in children can be particularly draining due to the mystery surrounding it, and the issue of diagnosis at such a tender age. Depression and Your Child gives parents and caregivers a uniquely textured understanding of pediatric depression, its causes, its symptoms, and its treatments. Author Deborah Serani weaves her own personal experiences of being a depressed child along with her clinical experiences as a psychologist treating depressed children.
Current research, treatments and trends are presented in easy to understand language and tough subjects like self-harm, suicide and recovery plans are addressed with supportive direction. Parents will learn tips on how to discipline a depressed child, what to expect from traditional treatments like psychotherapy and medication, how to use holistic methods to address depression, how to avoid caregiver burnout, and how to move through the trauma of diagnosis and plan for the future.
Real life cases highlight the issues addressed in each chapter and resources and a glossary help to further understanding for those seeking additional information. Parents and caregivers are sure to find here a reassuring approach to childhood depression that highlights the needs of the child even while it emphasizes the need for caregivers to care for themselves and other family members as well.
This book is full of a lot of useful information. Depression is unique to each individual that experiences it, and this book has information on a variety of methods of treatment. It covers everything from talk therapy, to medications, to nutrition, to aromatherapy and more. The book also discusses warning signs of depression in children and also how to approach and talk with children about their experiences and feelings.
I think the variety of treatments discussed throughout is one of the highlights of this book. Not every treatment method works for every child. This book has a lot of options and ideas, so that parents and caregivers can find something that works for their child. The variety of options adds and extra element of positivity to the book. Depression is tricky to deal with, and it can't be addressed the same way for each person. I think the fact that there are so many different options covered is very helpful to parents and caregivers because not everyone looks at depression from all angles. Some professionals only look at it from the viewpoint of medication and talk therapy, and that's it. This book provides alternative treatments. I also enjoyed that the author does not try to say that any one type of treatment is better than another, just that all of the options are meant to help supplement the overall goal of helping the child to feel better again. The different options are all "tools in the toolbox" for managing depression. I'm very much a big picture person, and think that this wide range of options is particularly helpful for anyone who is trying to help a person suffering from depression.
Another thing that helps make this material more accessible is the fact that the author intersperses her own experiences with depression into the book as well. I always enjoy when non-fiction books have the authors own experiences written along with the material because it shows that they really relate to the subject on a deeper, more personal level.
While the book itself focuses on children, the material is easily applicable to adults as well. One quote sparked quite a realization for me personally, when I read it.
"Introverts require a certain amount of quietness in their life. Introverted children expend a lot of energy being with others, which can leave them feeling tired and setting them into meltdown mode, which can certainly look like depression." (Location 220-221)I am an introverted person by nature, and I have always enjoyed quiet time alone. On really busy days, or after long days at work I find myself exhausted and looking forward to just being able to come home and sit in the quiet. Reading this quote helped me to realize that it's because I'm an introvert by nature, but everyday life requires a lot of interaction with others, which is also great, but can be tiring. So, I look forward to getting my alone time to recharge.
One thing that I noticed about this book is that if you are reading it on a Kindle it may be somewhat difficult to read the charts and tables that are used in the book, just due to space and formatting.
This is a great book with lots of valuable information and resources. I highly recommend it for anyone interested in psychology.