Anxiety in children can be a major challenge for both the child and the parents. Child anxiety can take many forms and be very strong or weak. It can only appear in certain situations or be a constant factor in the life of the child – and the family. While every child is different, and the anxieties they feel are just as different, anxiety in children is an issue that many families struggle with. It is estimated that around five percent of all kids suffer from child anxiety.
Anxiety can be seen in kids of every age, from three to four years of age to teens entering adulthood. Sometimes it is a fear of being separated from the parents, or another possibility is muteness around other children. More commonly, it can just be general anxiety. In any case, it can be much worse if it goes untreated until the child grows up. What was child anxiety can become a serious problem with difficult anxiety disorders and depression. Because the anxiety can influence many important parts of a child’s life, and is often connected to social situations, finding a way to reduce its power and influence is an important task for a parent who sees that the child is not enjoying his or her childhood and life because of anxiety. But in many cases, it is possible to reduce the power of anxiety in children to the point where it no longer has an impact. Anxiety is a normal part of childhood, and every child goes through phases. A phase is temporary and usually harmless. But children who suffer from an anxiety disorder experience fear, nervousness, and shyness, and they start to avoid places and activities. A child who sees a scary movie and then has trouble falling asleep or has a similar temporary fear can be reassured and comforted. But that is not enough to help a child with an anxiety disorder get past his or her fear and anxiety. Anxiety disorders also often co-occur with other disorders such as depression, eating disorders, and attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). With treatment and support, your child can learn how to successfully manage the symptoms of an anxiety disorder and live a normal childhood. There are multiple different types of Anxiety Disorders, but the most common one is Generalized Anxiety Disorder or GAD. In this disorder, the child will worry excessively about a variety of things such as grades, family issues, relationships with peers, and performance in sports. Children with GAD tend to be very hard on themselves and strive for perfection. They may also seek constant approval or reassurance from others.
Another type of anxiety is Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder. OCD is characterized by unwanted and intrusive thoughts and feeling compelled to repeatedly perform rituals and routines to try and ease anxiety. Most children with OCD are diagnosed around age 10, although the disorder can strike children as young as two or three. Boys are more likely to develop OCD before puberty, while girls tend to develop it during adolescence.
Panic disorder is diagnosed if a child suffers at least two unexpected panic or anxiety attacks—which means they come on suddenly and for no reason—followed by at least one month of concern over having another attack, losing control, or "going crazy." Posttraumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) Children with posttraumatic stress disorder, or PTSD, may have intense fear and anxiety, become emotionally numb or easily irritable, or avoid places, people, or activities after experiencing or witnessing a traumatic or life-threatening event. Not every child who experiences or hears about a traumatic event will develop PTSD. It is normal to be fearful, sad, or apprehensive after such events, and many children will recover from these feelings in a short time. Children most at risk for PTSD are those who directly witnessed a traumatic event, who suffered directly (such as injury or the death of a parent), had mental health problems before the event, and who lack a strong support network. Violence…