Most children will experience a typical fear or anxiety during their life time. They might be nervous about taking a test or starting a new school. In most cases, these fears do not turn irrational or develop into a panic attack or a panic disorder. But, there are some children that may show signs of a panic disorder for other reasons.

As much as we would like to protect the innocence of children and prevent anything from interfering with their lives, it is not always possible. Children can be afflicted with certain types of anxiety disorders that are also seen in adults. A generalized panic disorder might be seen in children in a variety of ways. They might excessively worry about everyday events like school or things at home. They tend to be extremely hard on themselves and strive for perfection. They might redo tasks in an effort to get them to come out perfectly. They might also seek constant approval and reassurance from others.

Symptoms are:

• Unsure of self
•Avoidance behaviours
• Requires constant reassurance
• Perfectionism
• Overly conformist
• Over - Reacting to criticism
• Poor social skills
• Procrastination
• Shyness
• Cries easily
• Upset over changes in routine
• General worries
• Scared of leaving parent
• Frequent headaches and stomach aches

Generalized Anxiety Disorder

This type of childhood anxiety disorder is marked by excessive worrying, usually over trivial or unimportant things. Children between the ages of 6-11 are often afflicted the most and GAD in children is commonly brought on by events like the first day of school or other important extracurricular activities. Some of the symptoms of GAD in children are:

    * Poor concentration
    * Fatigue
    * Irritability
    * Sleeplessness
    * Destructive behavior

Some of the most common treatments for child anxiety disorder are:

1. Drugs - Drugs such as anti-depressants and beta blockers have been successful in child anxiety treatment.

2. Psychologists or Psychiatrists - Child psychologists and psychiatrists are trained professionals and have had great success in treating child anxiety disorder. Medical professionals can help you to notice symptoms and alert you to unhealthy behaviors.

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3. Cognitive Behavioral Therapy - This is a psychotherapeutic approach that focuses on problems concerning dysfunctional emotions, behaviors and cognitions. It works by modifying the negative emotions. In some cases, treatment is applied through the gradual exposure of the feared stimulus, reducing the anxiety it causes the child.

Children can be afflicted with certain types of anxiety disorders that are also seen in adults. A generalized panic disorder might be seen in children in a variety of ways. They might excessively worry about everyday events like school or things at home. They tend to be extremely hard on themselves and strive for perfection. They might redo tasks in an effort to get them to come out perfectly.


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