Most Common Mental Health Issues in Children

Most Common Mental Health Issues in Children

Not many believe but, children too suffer from mental health issues. However, the symptoms of these conditions in children are different from those in adults. Because of this reason, it is hard for parents to identify mental illness in children.

According to experts, parents can identify the mental disorders in children as delays or disruptions in age-related thinking, social behaviors, social skills as well as regulation of emotions.

Stats show that one out of every 10 children in the world suffers from some sort of mental health issue. These alarming figures speak for themselves about the drastic increase in the number of mental health issues in children nowadays. Being a parent, if you observe any strange or peculiar behavior in your child, you must take them to an experienced psychologist in Dubai at your earliest.

On this note, today, we’re going to talk about some of the most common mental health issues found in children. Let’s take a look at them!


Issues such as persistent fears, worries, or strong dependency on adults are symptoms of anxiety disorder. Because of this disorder, children are unable to participate in their day-to-day activities such as plays, sports, etc.

The problem of anxiety develops when a child isn’t able to outgrow their fears or feelings of worry that these feelings start interfering with school, home, and other daily chores. Some of the most common types of an anxiety disorder include:

  • Separation Anxiety

The fear of being away from their parents

  • Phobias

Extreme fear regarding a specific thing, situation, or scenario. For instance, fear of heights, dogs, insects, going to the hospital, etc.

  • Social Anxiety

Afraid of being in social places such as schools, gatherings, etc.

  • General Anxiety

Getting worried about the future and things that still have to happen.

  • Panic Disorder

Repeated episodes of sudden, unexpected intense fear that comes with heart-pounding, trouble in breathing, feeling dizzy, sweaty, or shaky are panic disorders.

Children suffering from anxiety can become irritable and angry without any specific reason. Other symptoms include trouble sleeping, fatigue, headaches, stomachaches, etc. There are many centers for psychiatry in Dubai that can help kids dealing with anxiety disorders.


Being a little sad or hopeless occasionally is part of life but having excessive feelings of sadness or hopelessness are clear signs of depression.

Depression is a common disorder that most children and adolescents suffer from. As per a report, 10-15% of children experience depression before reaching adulthood.

According to different psychiatry experts, persistent feelings of sadness, hopelessness, or lack of interest aren’t healthy. Rather it’s a clear indication that your child is in dire need of help and support. Therefore, if you feel that your child is going through such a phase, consult a therapist immediately because if left untreated, severe depression can even lead to suicide.     

Some common examples of depression in children are:

  • Feeling agitated, irritable or sad.
  • Not taking any interest in doing fun things.
  • Showing changes in sleeping patterns.
  • Change in eating habits.
  • Not able to pay attention.
  • Feeling worthless, guilty or useless.

Autistic Spectrum Disorder (ASD)

Autistic Spectrum Disorder is a neurological condition that affects the development of social skills, communication, and behavior in children. ASD develops in children before the age of 3 and its severity can vary from child to child.

Generally, autistic children have difficulty communicating and interacting with others. Moreover, these children also show repetitive behaviors.

Oppositional Defiant Disorder (ODD)

Showing a little bit of stubbornness, opposition and defiance are normal in children as it’s part of their growth. However, when children start acting out persistently that it starts causing problems at home, school, and with their peers, they may have ODD.

ODD generally starts before the age of 8, but in some, it can show up to 12 years of age. Children suffering from this disorder are really stubborn and defiant, especially around people they know like family, teachers, babysitters, etc.

Some common behavior of children with ODD include:

  • Frequent episodes of anger and losing temper.
  • Arguing with adults or refusing to follow the rules, commands or requests.
  • Being resentful or spiteful
  • Deliberately teasing and annoying others or getting annoyed themselves.
  • Blaming others for their mistakes and shortcomings.

Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD)

Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder is a common neurobehavioral disorder that develops in early childhood. It usually results from a number of factors affecting the development and functioning of the child’s brain.

Children that have ADHD usually show a lack of attention to detail, have trouble finishing the work they’ve started, are impatient, or can be hyperactive. These children also make careless mistakes and can show impulsive behavior.

Conduct Disorder (CD)

Some people may show an ongoing pattern of episodes of aggression towards their peers or siblings and have the habit of violating rules and social norms. This behavior isn’t normal and children depicting such behavior may be suffering from conduct disorder.

Children having CD usually show these behaviors:

  • Breaking of school rules
  • Not following societal norms
  • Being extra aggressive in a way that can harm others
  • Involved in bullying, fighting and cruel behavior towards animals.
  • Damaging others property, lying and stealing.

These conditions can be controlled if treatment is started on time. Therefore, if you feel that your child might be suffering from CD, take them to the best psychologist in Dubai immediately.

Eating Disorder (ED)

Another common mental disorder in children is the eating disorder (ED). It is a mental disease in which the patient develops a preoccupation with eating. They strive to achieve the perfect body shape and are overwhelmed with losing weight and developing unsafe eating habits.

Conditions such as anorexia, bulimia, and binge-eating are all forms of the eating disorder. However, when we are talking about eating disorders in children under the age of 12, then early detection is the key to prevention.

Common eating disorders in younger children are:

  • Restrictive or Avoidant Food Intake Disorder
  • Pica
  • Anorexia Nervosa

Binge eating & Bulimia Nervosa are less common in young children. However, if you observe that the eating habits of your children aren’t normal, take them to a well-reputed center such as Camali Clinic. Remember that psychological issues in children can be easily treated if they are diagnosed on time. So, whenever you observe irregularity, see a therapist. Being extra cautious won’t hurt you at all but will save your child from any serious issues!


Trying new things is something I love to do. I enjoy traveling and listening to music. I write content for websites and blogs.

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