Anxiety disorders have become a subject of concern in recent years. Going by the studies that have been carried on child anxiety, it’s correct to say that if left unchecked, anxiety among kids can mushroom into something serious. It’s imperative to note that there is a difference between child anxiety and anxiety disorders. While anxiety in children is looked upon as something normal, the same cannot be said of anxiety disorders. Anxiety disorders are as a result of an underlying problem that needs medical attention rather than a normal phase that kids generally go through.
It’s important to note that kids experience various types of anxiety. This piece aims to bring you up to speed with what child anxiety is, types of anxiety in children as well as how parents can support their kids in overcoming this problem. One type of child anxiety is social anxiety where a child expresses fear and worry in situations where he/she has to interact with other people or become the subject of attention. Basically, a child with social type of anxiety tends to be withdrawn or shy, have a belief that other kids or people will laugh at them, only have a handful of friends, avoid social interactions or events and experience acute difficulty in meeting new people and making friends.
Separation anxiety in children on the other hand is a type of anxiety commonly experienced by kids who cannot stand being separated from their parents or even guardians and caretakers. Kids with kind of anxiety generally throw tantrums when being separated from their parents, refuse to attend preschool and day care by themselves, refuse to sleep over in other people’s homes typically complain of being sick when separated from their parents. The third type of child anxiety is what is known as generalized anxiety. This is a type or kind of anxiety where a child tends to exhibit worry in many facets of life.
Children with this kind of anxiety tend to be worried of virtually anything ranging from their safety, their performance at school, health and a host of many others. They tend to seek reassurance constantly, find it uncomfortable answering or even asking questions in class, are worried of unfamiliar places and basically feel the need to do everything to perfection. The question is, how does a parent help kids who are experiencing anxiety? First and foremost, a parent needs to share in the fear of their child. He or she needs to acknowledge the fear and be part of the solution. Ignoring or dismissing the fear of your child only serves to exacerbate the problem.
A parent should also desist from calling their children shy and should always reassure their kids to be confident and partake of activities that inform their fears. By so doing, the giant that is fear can be slained!
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