PURPOSE: The aim of this study was to evaluate the relationships among various psychosocial factors, behavior problems, and depressive symptoms reported by parents, and to investigate self-reported depression in Korean children using a community sample.
MATERIALS AND METHODS: The sample consisted of 1279 children between 9 and 12 years of age. The children were evaluated using the Korean version of the Child Behavior Checklist (K-CBCL) and the Child Depression Inventory (CDI).
RESULTS: The average self-reported depression score as measured by the CDI was 12.34 (SD: 6.79), and a cut-off point of 19 identified approximately 14% of the children as depressed. The group difference was identified by the age at which younger children were found to have higher CDI scores. Univariate logistic regression analysis showed that the high-CDI group and the low-CDI group differed in all behavioral domains identified in the parent-reported subscales of the K-CBCL. Age and father's education level were also independently associated with the risk for childhood depression. In addition, results from the logistic regression analyses indicated that parental reporting of problem internalization, total behavior problems, and social competence were independent predictors of child depression not identified by the anxious/depressed subscale.
CONCLUSION: It is believed that extensive behavioral problems reported by parents and several sociodemographic factors are related to childhood depression. However, parents tend to under-report depressive symptoms relative to what their own children report. Thus, clinicians must consider the self-reports of children related to depression in their diagnosis and intervention, because reports of depressive symptoms from children are more valid measures than those from parents.
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