Does Your Child Suffer From Anxiety?

Parenting can be challenging, especially when it comes to identifying which feelings and emotions are rooted in anxiety and which are part of being a teenager. A child's anxiety symptoms may appear like defiance or bad behaviour.  so it is possible and important to uncover the causes behind certain behaviours by understanding the emotions and feelings of another person.

Firstly, you know your child best. There are a few symptoms to watch for, but they do not necessarily indicate that your child has anxiety. We are all built differently and there is no such thing as "normal". Be on the lookout for changes in your child's emotional state, behaviour, and attitude. Identifying developmental stages from anxiety can be difficult as children grow out of phases or interests. But, when in doubt and you are really unsure, it’s always a good idea to consult a professional like your paediatrician or a child therapist. 

One of the tricky things about anxiety is that it can manifest in unexpected ways, and we can easily be challenged, or get frustrated by, or provide consequences (or even rewards) for behaviours that are driven by anxiety. Therefore it is important we do not add fuel to an already anxious child's fire can make things worse. So, let's take a look at some symptoms that are indicative of anxiety in your child.

What is Anxiety? 

Anxiety is a feeling of worry, nervousness, or unease, normally about an imminent event or something with an uncertain outcome.

You may have also heard of "flight-flight-freeze" mode. Observing your child’s behaviour in relation to these stress responses can help you see your child’s behaviour in a new light and identify the trigger. For example, what feels like deviant behaviour, like not wanting to get ready for school, might be your child going into flight mode because something is making them nervous about going to school. 

Here are som triggers and symptoms:

  • Running away/hiding - This could include hiding in a wardrobe or running away from a certain building (e.g. the doctors). This triggers the flight or flight response
  • Physical symptoms - Upset stomach, shaking or headaches are a few physical symptoms of anxiety
  • Clinginess - You, as the parent are a home base for your child. Your a sure of comfort for them and they regulate their emotions by being close to you
  • Questioning everything - By having a lot of concerns the child will ask questions to try and mentally cope with the situation
  • Avoidance - "No. I'm not going" or "You can't make me" is a coping mechanism to try and gain some control of a situation
  • Seeing Validation -  Particularly with children who are not confident within themselves and question if they are good enough or not
  • Anger - Having a stress response
  • Heightened Emotions - An emotional response leading into overdrive
  • Lack of Focus - A child’s performance at school or after school clubs can be a sign to watch for. Especially if receive feedback from a teacher that your child is not as engaged or is performing poorly, anxiety might be the root of the issue
  • Self-Soothing - Close attachment to a blanket, toy or object to help them regulate their emotions
  • Isolation - Child may withdraw, go into social isolation or be unwilling to participate in formally enjoyed experiences 
  • Nightmares or sleeping issues - Anxiety manifesting in the child's dreams or they may be too worried about an event which prevents them falling asleep or they want to sleep too much to avoid the anxiety
  • Eating Habits - "I'm not hungry" or binge eating can be a major sign to look out for as we tend to use food as our emotional crutch in most cases
  • Negative Self Talk - When you child says things such as "I'm so stupid" or they start to comment on their own body image, this is a sign to watch out for
  • Loosing interest in hobbies or activities - Anxiety can stop them enjoying something that they once found fun or loved 

 

 

Always remember, knowledge is power. Having awareness of these symptoms can help you approach your child with empathy and provide them with tools that can help reduce their anxiety. Creating a loving, trusting, safe space for them to talk about what’s going on with them can make a big impact. And practicing self-compassion for yourself can provide the role model they need for a healthy mindset. If you are looking for more tools for helping your anxious child, hypnotherapy is an amazing tool to help them be more in control and get rid of anxiety all together. 

How can hypnotherapy help my child?

Hypnosis opens the door to lasting change by going straight to the source of the problem and to reframe their entire mind on a subconscious level. Imagine what it would be like for your child to not let anxiety, stress and worry take over. Hypnotherapy is to help ‘program’ the subconscious mind to relax and see things more clearly so this will be a great tool to help your child. There is no medication involved, the child is completely in control and all they need is a quiet dark room with no distractions to listen to the audios. The other option is, if your child is comfortable to go and see a hypnotist face to face.

If you think your child will benefit from our hypnotherapy audios, please see the link below, or if you have any questions, you can send us an email to info@clearmindshypnotherapy.com 

 

https://clearmindshypnotherapy.com/products/anxiety-elimination-for-children-hypnotherapy?_pos=2&_sid=7aaf59a2c&_ss=r

 

 

 

References:
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https://athoughtisathought.com/blog/child-anxiety-symptoms-15-signs-that-your-child-might-be-suffering-from-anxiety
Verywell / Ellen Lindner

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