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Children can display an array of these symptoms if depressed. And behavior may vary from setting to setting. Although some depressed children may continue to function reasonably well in structured environments, most kids with significant depression will suffer a noticeable change. Children may also begin using drugs or alcohol, especially if they are over age 12.

Although rare in youths under 12, some may harm themselves with tattoos, piercings or attempted suicide especially if they feel worthless or joyless. It is important for parents and relatives to keep guns and knives locked up and far away from children. Note that. Children with a family history of violence, alcohol abuse, or physical or sexual abuse are at greater risk for suicide, as are those families with depressive symptoms.

Editor's Note: This copy was reviewed by PsychSystems, a behavioral health group practice.

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