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Some Danger Signals to Watch for in a Child Whose Close Relative has Died

August 30, 2017

 

• An extended period of depression in which the child loses interest in daily activities and events.

• Inability to sleep, loss of appetite, prolonged fear of being alone.

• Acting much younger for an extended period.

• Excessively imitating the dead person; repeated statements of wanting to join the dead person.

• Withdrawal from friends.

• Sharp drop in school performance or refusal to attend school.

These warning signs indicate that the child is having serious problems as a result of the death and professional help may be needed. “A child psychiatrist can help the child accept the death and assist the survivors in helping the child through the mourning process.” (Facts for Families, American Academy of Child Psychiatry, Vol. 1, No. 8)

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