As part of my series of tips on parenting, I decided to delve deeper into the growing issue of anxiety in children. As the mother of a wonderfully sensitive child, who has challenged me to be that much better a parent because of her sensitivity, the topic is near and dear to my heart.
My daughter has a tendency towards anxiety. Fortunately, I have been able to help her to learn how to deal with her anxious thoughts through approaches that are like the cognitive behavioral therapy mentioned below. Not only has this saved us a lot of suffering now because she is able to be calm and deal with the issues that initially cause her anxiety, but we are preventing major suffering in the future that comes with having an anxiety disorder.
The article below on anxiety in children was written by Eddie Tobey. I found it very interesting to read about the correlation between fears of the dark and anxiety. I also love that she stresses the importance of helping our kids when they are small so that they don’t have to suffer from lifelong mental illness. It’s sad but true that our kids today are more anxious than ever before, so this article is very timely.
Anxiety attacks are quite common in children, but they are often overlooked. Nearly half of the individuals with prepubertal onset of anxiety do not receive treatment for at least 10 years, and recent research suggests that many of these children develop chronic and persistent anxiety as adults. Both pharmacologic and psychotherapeutic treatments are available for children with anxiety disorders and the outcome is good, but since this remains a widely misjudged entity, treatment is only initiated when these children grow and have frequent anxiety attacks. However, in children who have received cognitive behavioral therapy for anxiety, the support has been empirical. The effect of cognitive behavioral therapy appears to be relatively well maintained over time.
Manifestations of anxiety in children alters as a child grows, and it is a known fact that most chronic mood and anxiety disorders in adults were preceded by anxiety disorders as a child. The link is strong.
Children who have a fear of the dark are at increased risk of developing anxiety attacks and depression as adults. Researchers warn that fears stem from a multitude of disorders rather than a variation of a single disorder.
In what may seem as a strange correlation, children with functional constipation have been observed to have more anxiety related to toileting behavior than healthy children. Painful bowel movements can make a child fearful of pain, and these children dread sitting on the toilet. This is called defecation anxiety. Some of these children develop generalized anxiety at later stages – the greater the defecation anxiety, the greater the generalized anxiety.
Anxiety Attacks provides detailed information on Anxiety Attacks, Physical Symptoms of Anxiety Attacks, Anxiety Attacks in Children, Causes of Anxiety Attacks and more. Anxiety Attacks is affiliated with Generalized Anxiety Disorder.