Suffering from anxiety is a real possibility for children today.
Especially within today’s context of uncertainty and economic upheaval, children face considerable anxiety which sometimes isn’t reflected enough to be of concern.
Being resilient is vital to survival in mental health – especially for children.
But it takes time to build that resilience. Also it takes time to understanding if the child could be suffering from anxiety which may sometimes not be visible at once.
How do you know if your child is affected by anxiety?
Often anxiety in children goes untouched – unlike in the case of adults. Suffering from anxiety can happen at any age, but makes a bigger impact during formation years of early childhood.
Does your child find it difficult to concentrate ?
A worried child is unable to focus on a given subject and feels that he or she must be concerned all the time about whatever is causing the anxiety.
The child will find it difficult to focus on anything and will be worried about almost everything.
Studies might be affected as a result and also , the attention span, causing serious concerns about being able to concentrate on anything.
The best way to deal with this is to assure the child that everything is alright. Sometimes, words may ring hollow but gestures such as a warm embrace, a welcoming smile and eye contact may deliver a better level of assurance than just saying it out loud.
Inability to sleep –
A worried child may not be able to sleep as he or she should. There might be nightly sweats, sudden waking up and irritability, all of which masks a growing and a very real anxiety.
Soothing words, spending time with the child at bed time, reading together or assuring in general that everything is alright are possible options that can work to ease the burden.
Keep building their confidence –
When you encourage a child to be confident within the environment, it is ideally done through assuring the child that you are there for him or her.
When the child understands that you as the parent or the caregiver is there as protection, he or she is likely to let anxiety go, slowly at first maybe but for certain over time.
It is important to assure children of your care, love and support in a way that affirms it all.
Spend quality time –
This is best done by spending time with them. Spending quality time not just quantity time.
Don’t talk to them while on your phone – put your phone down, hug them and spend time with them.
Sometimes you don’t need to say any words but show them by action that you are there for them.
Devote a regular time slot everyday to spend time with the children – you can encourage them to share their fears, anxieties and problems during this time.
Remember that although not directly evident, anxiety can be a real problem for the children.
They may express it in ways different than these but remember that key to minimising it lies with you as the parent.