One of the most difficult parenting moments we may experience is seeing our child in distress and feeling powerless in our ability to help him or her feel better. There will be a time in the life of every parent in which his or her child is struggling and the path to understanding and overcoming this struggle is unclear.
In order to help a child overcome distress, it is first important to identify the problem. Anxiety disorders are among the most common psychological difficulties in children and adolescents, affecting approximately 13% of youth in the United States.
Anxiety disorders in childhood are the greatest predictors of anxiety, mood, and substance abuse difficulties in adulthood; thus, it is important to identify and treat anxiety difficulties as early as is feasible.
Early identification and intervention is associated with positive long-term outcome.
A Parent’s Guide to Anxiety Disorders
Anxiety is a healthy, normal, and adaptive response to stress. It is our body’s way of alerting us to danger. It can be motivating and helpful to us in meeting our goals. However, in excess, it can cause us to feel overwhelmed and leave us unable to carry out our daily activities.
There are a number of anxiety disorders common to children of which parents should be aware: