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Identifying signs of anxiety in children

Identifying signs of anxiety in children

Determining any disorder in children can be challenging, more so if it is a mental health condition. The identification of an underlying anxiety disorder becomes next to impossible due to the overlapping of the symptoms with the common childhood tendencies. As a result, they can become confusing and misguiding, such as crying, hesitating to meet new people, denying separation from the parents, etc. Hence, most of the people do not suspect these signs as the symptoms of anxiety disorder. However, the truth is that these are the potential symptoms of anxiety disorder in a child.

Anxiety disorder is a common mental disorder in adults across the world. However, several studies have suggested that the disorder is also quite common and intense in children. As such, children often possess a fear of darkness, animals, loud noise or meeting strangers. The problem occurs if these apprehensions continue to grow with them.

Identifying an underlying anxiety disorder is difficult due to multiple reasons, such as lack of knowledge or confusing it with the common feeling of anxiety that occurs when stuck in an unexpected or threatening situation. Hence, people grappling with anxiety disorder tend to neglect the symptoms and ignore seeking medical help.

As mentioned above, it becomes more difficult in the case of children, as the symptoms are commonly confused with their general tendencies. The ignorance of the symptoms of an underlying anxiety disorder further increases the severity of the problem that has the potential to impact the adulthood of children. Therefore, it is important to recognize the early signs of anxiety in children and treat the condition well in time.

Below are a few tips and signs that can help one identify an anxiety disorder in his or her child:

  • Physical signs: A number of physical problems, such as headaches, tummy troubles, chronic coughing, breathing troubles or nightmares, in a child can be indicative of an underlying anxiety disorder. Additionally, other typical habits like nail biting or scratching can be due to an anxiety disorder.
  • Fears and worries: Generally, fears related to monster or darkness is common among children. However, when such worries become exaggerated or extremely severe in nature, they start affecting the daily life activities of children. During such situations, it is advisable to seek medical help immediately.
  • Outbursts and tantrums: Throwing tantrums or expressing anger to get their favorite toy or things of their interest is common among almost all children. However, if a child is experiencing the sudden outbursts of anger or behaving aggressively without any reasons, then it hints upon an underlying anxiety disorder. An anxiety disorder can lead to fight-or-flight response to go into overdrive that often results in aggression or outbursts.
  • Avoidance: If one notices a child avoiding a particular place, thing, person or situation, it could suggest that he or she is suffering from anxiety disorders. He or she may be avoiding the triggers to prevent himself or herself from experiencing the fears and the uneasy feelings caused by anxiety.
  • Loss of sleep: Generally, children often run away from sleeping when asked to. However, if a child is suffering from an anxiety disorder, he or she may experience loss of sleep, late sleeping, waking early or frequently through the nights, etc. Additionally, he or she may also display restlessness during his or her sleep.

Road to recovery

Since anxiety disorders are a treatable condition, a timely medical intervention not only improves a child’s childhood but also ensures him or her a healthy adulthood. Therefore, when a child is experiencing any unusual or disturbing fear or worry that persists for long, one should immediately consult the anxiety disorder treatment clinics for determining the anxiety disorder.

Alongside, one should also provide comfort and support to his or her child suffering from anxiety disorder and try understanding him or her. The unconditional love and support from parents assist children in recovering from the illness with ease.

For accessing more information about the licensed anxiety disorder treatment centers, contact the Anxiety Disorder Helpline. Call our 24/7 helpline number 866-971-7951 or chat online to get more information.