Anxiety in children is relatively common, with full-blown anxiety disorders affecting about 13 percent of tweens and teens. Even more children and tweens experience anxiety to a lesser degree. Here is some key information on anxiety in children.
When you observe possible anxiety symptoms in your child, it can be hard to know whether they’re cause for concern. If the symptoms are causing distress or impairing your child's life, they may be considered problematic. If not, it's possible that your child just has a more subdued, introspective nature. Follow up is important, however, since untreated anxiety issues may come along with other problems, such as mood issues and/or dysfunctional eating.
If your tween has experienced a brief episode of shaking, sweating, dizziness and a sense of impending doom, it may have been a panic attack. Panic attacks can be isolated or may be part of a larger anxiety issue such as panic disorder.
One form of anxiety in children is school refusal. There are other possible reasons for school refusal that do not involve anxiety, however, such as adjusting to a new school year.
Just as parents get stressed leading up to holidays, holidays can also cause anxiety in children. For some tweens, Halloween in particular may have unique anxiety-provoking features. Having family rituals may help to offset some of the holiday stress.
Another possible cause of anxiety in children is being bullied at school. Bullying can cause anxiety issues both immediately and in the long run. Notably, bullies themselves may also suffer from anxiety because of their acts.
Anxiety in children can be decreased in a number of ways. Mild anxiety may be decreased through regular exercise, which should be frequent and vigorous. For more severe cases of anxiety, therapy or medication may also be needed.