How to Help Your Child Live Free of Fears (Anxiety/Fear/Phobias/OCD)
It can be perfectly normal for children to feel anxious or fearful about certain things and situations. However, it can be alarming to see your child gripped with overwhelming fear and worry at the slightest provocation. Childhood can be a time when young people are expected be happy and carefree. However, when irrational fear prevents your child from living a full life, it may be time to step in.
Red Flags of Unreasonable Fears in Your Child
Anxiety is the top psychological health problem troubling many young people today. Parents and adults often regard anxious thinking patterns as something children will eventually grow out of. Some children are able to switch over to more adaptive thinking while some remained trapped in their unfounded fears and worries.
If your child belongs to the latter, your child may demonstrate excessive distress and/or become easily agitated in situations that may be considered “normal. With anxiety safe or low risk situations are often perceived to be dangerous. The anxiety/fear/phobia/OCD may have grown to the extent that your child remains in distress for hours, days, or weeks at a time. You child may complain of physical illnesses frequently, possibly to justify not attending or participating in school activities. At home, your child may require coaxing to perform even the most basic of activities.
Understanding Your Child’s Condition
As a parent, it can be confusing, upsetting or even frustrating to see your child’s intense reaction to almost everything and/or becoming frantic in the face of possible danger. It can be helpful to understand that it is the brain dictating these reactions and your child may be merely responding. Unknown to you, your child may be enduring great distress over things invisible to everyone else.
It may be difficult to see things the way your anxious child does, you may be inclined to be impatient, judgmental, and overprotective. Your comforting words may be of help to your child, though they may not necessarily be effective in the long run. You may benefit from a better understanding of what your child is experiencing. This increased understanding can assist you in providing support to your child and helping them to work through their fears and anxiety.
Ensuring an Anxiety-Free Future for Your Child
No matter how good a parent you are and regardless how hard you try, managing the signs and symptoms of anxiety/fear/phobias/OCD can be beyond your reach. Only a trained mental health professional can accurately diagnose your child’s condition and recommend the most appropriate treatment option to meet your child’s unique needs.
Anxiety can be a highly treatable condition, especially when treatment interventions are implemented early. Along with other emotional, psychological and behavioral concerns that are common with children, anxiety/fear/phobias/OCD is best treated by a professional. Effective treatment is available with the Fuquay-Varina office of Carolina Counseling Services. Licensed, independently contracted therapists are available to help you and your family move past your fears. Don’t let fear grow up with your child and take over more areas of his or her life.
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