Anxiety is common in young people’s lives, especially in the school arena where they are under constant academic & social pressure. A little stress is normal, perhaps even healthy, but what happens when your child’s life is dominated by worry? This can make your child feel insecure and scared. As a result, they often feel less confident in their abilities to solve problems and manage every day situations.
Anxiety disorders are among the most common mental health conditions. That's partly because everyone experiences stress and worry. There are many different types of anxiety disorders, with different symptoms. But they all share one common trait — prolonged, intense anxiety that is out of proportion to the present situation and affects a person's daily life and happiness.
It’s normal for children to occasionally forget their homework, daydream during class, act without thinking, or get fidgety at the dinner table. But inattention, impulsivity, and hyperactivity are also signs of attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD or ADD). ADHD can lead to problems at home and school and affect your child’s ability to learn and get along with others. The first step to addressing the problem and getting your child the help he or she needs is to learn to recognize the signs and symptoms of ADHD.
Childhood depression is different from the normal "blues" and everyday emotions that occur as a child develops. Just because a child seems sad doesn't necessarily mean he or she has significant depression. If the sadness becomes persistent, or if disruptive behavior that interferes with normal social activities, interests, schoolwork, or family life develops, it may indicate that he or she has a depressive illness. Keep in mind that while depression is a serious illness, it is also a treatable one.
Each child grieves significant life changes (e.g., divorce, death, moving) in his or her own way. As reactions can vary according to age, cognitive & developmental ability, and personality, children in the same family may react differently. Some children develop traumatic grief responses, making it even harder to cope. When this happens children get “stuck” in negative images, thoughts and feelings about the life changes. This can make it harder to do schoolwork, behave at home, and interact well with friends.
Therapy can help with their feelings and reactions to promote healing & develop positive coping. By helping children develop the tools to manage anxiety, refrain from catastrophic thinking and focus on the positive, they will become better equipped to adjust to major life changes both now and in the future
Disruptive behavior disorders are among the easiest to identify because they involve behaviors that are readily seen such as temper tantrums, physical aggression (such as attacking other children), excessive argumentativeness, lying, stealing, and other forms of defiance or resistance to authority.
Early identification and treatment may, however, increase the chances that your child can learn to control these behaviors.