Adjustment Disorder Treatment in Kenilworth IL

What is an Adjustment Disorder?

An adjustment disorder is an emotional or behavioral reaction to a stressful or upsetting event such as divorce, starting at a new school, or a death in the family. You may not be able to identify a stressful event that your child has experienced, as some events can happen at school or another person’s home. While adults can experience adjustment disorders, they are commonly diagnosed in children and adolescents. 

Symptoms of Adjustment Disorders

Symptoms of adjustment disorders in children vary, and it is important to look out for a reaction that lasts longer than usual after the stressful or upsetting event. Common symptoms to look out for include: 

  • Crying spells
  • Tantrums
  • Nervousness and jitteriness
  • Depressed mood
  • Avoiding school
  • Being isolated from family and friends
  • Poor school performance
  • Irritability

Diagnosing Adjustment Disorders

Your child psychiatrist or qualified mental health professional can make the diagnosis of an adjustment disorder after an evaluation. The psychiatrist will often talk with the parents and the child and ask questions about the child’s emotions, behavior, family history and the stressful event that has occurred. If all other conditions are ruled out and the child meets the criteria, an adjustment disorder may be diagnosed.

Treating Adjustment Disorders

The type of treatment a child needs will depend on factors such as the child’s age, their symptoms, and the type of event that took place. Your child’s mental health professional will create a treatment plan that is tailored to your child.

One of the more effective ways of helping children adjust is helping them strengthen their coping skills through individual psychotherapy. A mental health professional can help achieve this by building up positive skills such as physical activity, positive self-statements, increasing social skills, or emotional regulation.

Other treatment options include:

  • Family therapy
  • Peer group therapy
  • Parent training
  • Medication (not recommended unless symptoms are severe)

When Should I Seek Help From a Professional?

Don’t brush off mood swings after a stressful event has happened in your child’s life. If you notice changes in your child’s mood or behavior that occur for longer than two weeks, schedule an appointment with a psychiatric professional or contact AFG Guidance Center to set up an appointment.  

Schedule an Appointment

Even if your child’s mood swings are not due to an adjustment disorder, it is important to rule out all other physical or mental health issues your child may be suffering. If you believe your child’s symptoms are related to an adjustment disorder, contact AFG Guidance Center today.

Call (847) 853-0234