Anxiety is a normal part of everyday childhood. At the right level, anxiety can be helpful to children as they prepare for new or challenging situations. However, at levels that are too high, anxiety can cause significant problems in a child’s school, social or home life. Anxiety disorders are one of the most common childhood referral concerns. There are many different types of anxiety disorders, but they generally share a common symptom – prolonged, intense anxiety that is out of proportion to the triggering event and interferes with daily life.
Your child might suffer from anxiety if they display the following symptoms:
- Worries excessively about health, school performance, social issues, etc.
- Avoids familiar people or places out of fear
- Is afraid to be alone
- Has difficulty separating from parents
- Refuses to go to school
- Trouble concentrating
- Frequently complains of physical ailments
- Has difficulty settling down, seems restless
- Has trouble sleeping at night, seeks out a parent
- Constantly seeks reassurance
- Has experienced a panic attack (an episode of sudden and intense physical symptoms)
Research shows that two specific types of treatments are most effective in managing anxiety disorders: cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) and medication. At CNC our licensed clinical psychologists use CBT to treat anxiety disorders. CBT is a type of therapy that helps reduce children’s anxiety by challenging irrational, fearful thinking and teaching kids to face previously avoided situations or objects. Referrals for medication can also be provided when appropriate. With the right treatment, kids can learn to manage their anxiety and enjoy social and academic success.
If you have concerns that your child is experiencing anxiety, please call Chicago Neurodevelopmental Center at 847-272-2484 to schedule an assessment, consultation and/or treatment. Our psychologists are also available to work with your child’s school and other treatment providers to ensure continuity of care.