Ci, the gender non-binary person from Utah, described the physical symptoms of panic attacks (not the physical symptoms of depression, as Ci had stated) starting in the 3rd grade.
Both diagnoses can give debilitating symptomatology. Both diagnoses often cohabitate the same sufferer.
The misinterpretation of symptoms (by a patient/client) and the misdiagnosis by a medical professional may send a patient/client down the wrong path of therapies for years.
As an aside, many who suffer with undiagnosed, or untreated, panic disorder will often become depressed due to the persistent dysfunction and disability from the panic.
For a variety of reasons, many of our pediatric and adolescent population develop extremely uncomfortable psychological symptoms (loneliness, sadness, fear, shame, embarrassment, anxiety, abandonment, etc).
If there is a significant delay in communicating, or a total lack of communicating, these symptoms to an appropriate, helpful, adult, then the natural drive to “self-explain”, or self-treat these psychological discomforts falls on the youngster, who has to use any source or means available to their young minds.
Often there are seemingly adequate explanations for these discomforts, by observing their friends and family, or by watching and listening to a variety of media.
Self-treatments (anything to decrease the internal tensions and unpleasant feelings) for these youngsters include everything from avoidance, to isolation, to distractions (e.g. screentime), to self-medication, to self harm.
Charles Tadros, M.D.
August 30, 2022
Saint Louis, Missouri