When wondering what to do with anxious kids, we sometimes think – and hope – that the anxiety will go away on it’s own. That our kids are simply nervous or shy. However, if your child is experiencing anxiety so intense that it’s interfering with his or her life, it is important to seek treatment. Anxiety that is untreated tends to get worse over time, not better, because avoidance is a short-term solution that most parents and families use. As kids work to avoid triggering their anxiety or fear, those fears tend to only grow more powerful.
This means that if you’re wondering what to do with anxious kids, and anxiety is affecting the daily life of your family, then it may be a great time to speak with your doctor and call us at True North Counseling. If your kids are diagnosed with an anxiety disorder or you are wondering what to do with anxious kids who are experiencing the symptoms of anxiety, anxiety counseling can be very beneficial.
It is important to first note that experiencing the symptoms of anxiety from time-to-time is normal. Many people, even kids, feel anxious, nervous, or unsettled at different points in their childhood. These are common reactions to new events or difficult times in life. For example, many kids may report feeling anxious before a big test in school, when participating in a new activity, or when experiencing a transition in life. However, if those feelings of anxiety do not subside even once the temporary stressor is removed, it is important to seek out treatment. Your doctor will then be able to work with you and your family to identify symptoms, provide more information on potential courses of treatment, and help you get started with the one that works best for your kids and family.
Please contact your doctor and reach out to us at True North Counseling if you answer yes to one or more of the following questions:
- Do your kids worry excessively and/or on a regular basis?
Many people, even kids, experience thoughts of worry at various points in their lives. However, those who benefit greatly from treatment are not often able to alleviate their anxious feelings on their own. Counseling is a really useful form of treatment to help your children identify and manage the factors that contribute to their symptoms (rather than avoid those triggers).
- Do your children experience feelings of restlessness? Is it hard for them to get comfortable or sit still?
Many signs of anxiety manifest as physical symptoms in the body. This means that kids suffering from anxiety might notice the effects of anxiety in their bodies, energy levels, or ability to complete daily tasks. You want to speak with your doctor if your children experience symptoms of anxiety that interfere with their ability to cope with daily tasks and activities.
- Has night time become a source of distress for you and your family? Do you kids have trouble falling asleep, staying asleep, or waking up?
If you found yourself nodding along “yes” to one or more of these questions, or if the symptoms in your household are impacting day-to-day tasks and activities, then it may be time to speak with your doctor. Anxiety counseling is an effective form of anxiety treatment that may help identify, manage, and/or alleviate anxiety symptoms. Professionals are trained to diagnose the signs of anxiety and provide proper course of treatment, including effective ways to manage the factors that contribute to anxiety symptoms. Such courses of treatments include cognitive behavioral therapy, group therapy, or family therapy. When it comes to what to do with anxious kids, it is important to work with your doctor to find the treatment plan that works best for your family.
Feel free to also reach out to us at True North Counseling. You can contact us today at (614)310-4940. Our licensed psychologist, Sonya Slater, is available to provide counseling to children, teens, and adults. Maintaining a collaborative relationship with patients, Dr. Slater focuses on resiliency, patient strengths, and respect for diversity. Her treatment approach incorporates interpersonal, cognitive-behavioral, and mindfulness techniques. Some of the areas she specializes are individuals coping with life transitions such as divorce and transition to college, anxiety, grief and trauma, relationship issues, depression, ADHD, and behavior problems in children. Dr. Slater received her doctoral degree from Xavier University in Cincinnati, Ohio and has worked in a community mental health center as the Training Director for a psychology internship program. We look forward to hearing from you and answering any questions you might have!
Anxiety Disorders. (March 2016). In National Institute of Mental Health. Retrieved from https://www.nimh.nih.gov/health/topics/anxiety–disorders/index.shtml
Anxiety Disorders. In National Alliance on Mental Illness. Retrieved from https://www.nami.org/Learn–More/Mental–Health–Conditions/Anxiety–Disorders.
Behavioral Treatment for Kids with Anxiety. In Child Mind Institute. Retrieved from https://childmind.org/article/behavioral–treatment–kids–anxiety/.