It is the most wonderful time of year for parents everywhere, back to school month is here! As happy as you may feel, your child or teen may not feel exactly the same. So how do you know if your child or teen has anxieties that are typical or severe? Here are some questions to ask yourself about your child or teen, before overwhelming yourself with anxiety:
1. Is your child or teen having nightmares, difficulty falling asleep or staying asleep?
2. Are they complaining of frequent stomach aches or an upset stomach?
3. Have they distanced themselves from you or loved ones?
4. Are they frequently practicing obsessive behaviors to help them increase a sense of control?
5. Do they speak negatively about themselves and the world around them?
6. Do they view the world in extremes, can everything only be right or wrong?
7. Are they making frequent illogical decisions?
8. Are they having difficulty communicating emotions and do they avoid their emotions all together?
9. Are they having difficulty concentrating, focusing or is their mind going blank?
10. Have they been feeling overly worried or anxious for at least six months?
If you feel your child or teen may have anxiety talk to them first. Discuss how they feel and ask them if they would like help, just because they want to talk to a professional does not mean something is wrong with them. Reassure them and be supportive. Talking to someone just means, I am reaching out, I want to be understood and I want to improve. Help your child and your teen by searching for a professional that would be a best fit for them. Not every therapist is alike, just as not every child, teen or family are alike.