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Why has my daughter become lazy and sluggish?

Q: My 11 year old daughter is presently studying in VI standard. Her weight is around 44 to 45 kgs and I notice that she has become pretty sluggish in her activities, thinking especially those related to studies and doing pretty badly in studies too. Is there a possibility of thyroid related problem or is it a psychological problem? She is a bright child and is very responsible, but recently her studies too are getting affected and she gives up easily and has a very lazy attitude. Please suggest a remedy. She does not participate in any outdoor games due to pressure of studies. I am a working mother. I also have a three year old daughter.

A:It is not easy to arrive at any conclusion about your daughter from the information you have given. However, I will try and infer some details. She has probably had her menarche (first menstrual period) recently. She may be a little self conscious and may need to be assured that she is normal. Also, you must track her menstrual periods and other aspects of her health, so that you can detect a problem, if any. Also, you must take some time off to talk to her and find out if anything is bothering her. If she was bright and responsible earlier and is now sluggish, surely that is a temporary condition that can be set right. There is no need to conclude that she has a thyroid problem; that can be known only after a proper test by a doctor. You should be able to check out at your level, why she no longer enjoys school work. Spend time with her and get her to talk to you. Plan an activity with her that she likes and can excel. If she is a little over-weight, she may think that others make fun of her. There is a strong case for her to take part in outdoor games and activities, to have friends and to do well in school. You could consult your doctor, if you feel that there is a physical problem. Communicating with children, with warmth and intimacy is the prerogative of the parents. Assert your right to that!

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