Anxiety in children (what are the symptoms)

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The current blogpost will be based on the question “what are anxiety symptoms in children”. We will learn about the various symptoms of anxiety among children that seem to be unique to them and are different from the anxiety symptoms in adults. We will also discuss the anxiety symptoms in children with examples in this blogpost.

What are anxiety in children’s symptoms?

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Anxiety symptoms in children are quite different and unique from the one’s exhibited in adults. The symptoms of anxiety are often usually depicted in the form of fear, irritability, frustration and constant worry. Parents often need to pick up the behavioral cues of their children in order to see if the anxiety being experienced by the child is of the same intensity as expected or do they need to take measures to lessen the anxiety since its way out of proportion to the actual threat imposed on the child.

It is often generally noticeable among children to feel anxious while going to school, while meeting new people, while meeting their new classmates, while attending social gatherings, while meeting relatives or going to shopping malls or markets. 

However, the usual anxiety among children gets settled with repeated exposure and does not get in the way of the child’s academic or home routine. The child is able to function well even in the presence of the routine feelings of anxiety related to new social settings. 

In case when the child’s anxiety exacerbates and they have distorted or declined functioning across various life spheres that tends to have adverse effects on their social, academic and domestic life; the parents need to look for the symptoms and the various triggers that act as a maintaining factor for the anxiety factors.

Following are some of the usual triggers of anxiety symptoms among children :

  • Frequent shifting of house
  • Frequent shifting of school
  • Shouting or yelling of parents 
  • Parental conflicts
  • Verbal or emotional abuse
  • Loss of a loved one
  • Death of a family member
  • Physical ailment
  • Physical disability
  • Any traumatic life event 
  • Academic issues
  • Bullying
  • Neglect
  • Sexual abuse
  • Fear of failure
  • Fear of being inadequate
  • Low confidence
  • Having an intellectual deficient academic ability
  • Having symptoms related to attention deficit hyperactivity disorder

Some commonly identified scenarios that activate the anxiety symptoms  among children are as below:

  • Being anxious upon getting away from parents
  • Having extreme fear about a specific thing or situation
  • Being afraid of school or other places where there are people around
  • Being worried about the future
  • Apprehending bad things happening in the future
  • Having repeated episodes of sudden and unexpected intense fear that is mostly associated with a pounding heart, feeling dizzy, shaking and sweaty.

The most commonly reported features of anxiety among children are as follows :

  • As a result of anxiety children often exhibit irritability and appear annoyed
  • Children often appear being on the edge due to anxiety
  • One of the common and most commonly reported anxiety symptom among children is being fidgety
  • Often restlessness is exhibited among children as a common sign of anxiety
  • Children often exhibit withdrawal as a sign of anxiety
  • Children often portray temper tantrums and mood swings as a sign of anxiety
  • Children get frustrated usually due to anxiety
  • Inadequate eating habits are a prominent sign of anxiety among children
  • Inadequate sleep patterns occur as a result of anxiety among children 
  • Incontinence often appears as a symptom of anxiety among children
  • Inadequate coping skills are a symptom of anxiety among children
  • Declined socialization is a common sign of anxiety among children
  • Disturbed interpersonal relationships are a sign of anxiety among children
  • Low interest in life is a sign of anxiety among children
  • Low academic performance or declined interest in academics is a sign of anxiety among children
  • Loss of interest in routine age appropriate activities is a sign of anxiety among children
  • Being overly cautious is a sign of anxiety among children
  • Appearing confused is a sign of anxiety among children
  • Stammering while talking is a sign of anxiety among children
  • Being quiet more often is a sign of anxiety among children
  • Taking less interest in play is a sign of anxiety among children
  • Complaining of physical symptoms like stomach ache is a sign of anxiety among children
  • Trembling or shaking of legs and arms is a symptom of anxiety among children
  • Declined academic achievement is a sign of anxiety among children
  • Crying more than usual is a sign of anxiety among children
  • Avoiding friends and social interaction is an active symptom of anxiety
  • Being passive and not being physically active is a symptom of anxiety among children
  • Not able to register the school work or class tasks is a sign of anxiety among children
  • Having restless sleeps is a symptom of anxiety among children
  • Complaining of insomnia or hypersomnia is a symptom of anxiety among children
  • Complaining of nausea and vomiting is a symptom on anxiety among children
  • Complaining of severe headaches is a sign of anxiety among children
  • Nail biting is a symptom of anxiety among children
  • Teeth grinding is a symptom of anxiety among children
  • Bed wetting is a symptom of anxiety among children
  • Getting angry quickly and throwing toys is a symptom of anxiety among children
  • Picking up hair from head is a sign of anxiety among children

Conclusion

The current blogpost was based on the question ““what are anxiety symptoms in children”. We discussed the various symptoms of anxiety that are unique to kids in addition to the general anxiety symptoms that usually exist among humans.

Frequently asked questions : Anxiety in children symptoms

What are 3 warning signs of anxiety?

The 3 warning signs of anxiety are as follows :

  • Feeling nervous, restless or tense.
  • Having a sense of impending danger, panic or doom.
  • Having an increased heart rate.

How do you help a child with anxiety?

You can help a child with anxiety by :

  • Helping him focus on various environmental stimuli
  • Helping him try deep breathing
  • Not shouting or getting angry at the child
  • Avoiding leading questions

How do I know if my child has stress and anxiety?

You can know if your child has anxiety and stress by looking for :

  • Isolation
  • Withdrawal
  • Recurrent fears
  • Clinging attitude
  • Difficulty controlling emotions

When should I be concerned about my child’s anxiety?

If the child tends to depict signs of anxiety that are much in excess of real or actual threat, the unrealistic bouts of anxiety need to be monitored and discussed with a pediatrician who can then refer to a psychologist.

Citations

https://www.verywellmind.com/anxiety-symptoms-2633863

https://www.cdc.gov/childrensmentalhealth/depression.html

https://www.nhs.uk/mental-health/children-and-young-adults/advice-for-parents/anxiety-disorders-in-children/

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