Anxiety in Children
Is Your Child Struggling With Anxiety?
Have you noticed that your child often feels uncomfortable or anxious, but you don’t understand why? Is he or she having a hard time managing disruptive behavior at home or at school? Is your child constantly worrying about his or her ability to perform in school or navigate friendships? Maybe your child is experiencing symptoms like irrational fears, rapid heartbeat, headaches and stomach aches without a clear cause. Or perhaps your child is suddenly having difficulty sleeping, and your morning routine has left you both physically and emotionally exhausted. He or she may throw temper tantrums or experience separation anxiety when leaving for the school day. You might be concerned about how increased stress or anxiety in your own life – going through a divorce or changing careers, for example – is affecting your child. Or you might know that anxiety runs in your family and want your child to learn healthy coping skills early. Do you wish you had the information and tools you needed to help your child manage symptoms and reduce anxiety in his or her life?
Anxiety Impacts Everyone Differently
Life presents challenges both large and small, and it is completely normal to become stressed or anxious when dealing with difficult emotions or circumstances. Anxiety in children, just like in adults, occurs when worries become overwhelming. From homework and tests to building relationships and remembering the different sets of rules they must follow at school and at home, children face a wide variety of stressors that can contribute to distressing or chronic anxiety symptoms. In addition, a family history of anxiety or a stressful or traumatic event – like a move or divorce – can make a child more likely to suffer mild or severe anxiety. With so many different causes and symptoms of anxiety in children, finding the right treatment for your child can feel like a daunting task.
But, there is good news! Anxiety treatment at The Counseling Center in Towson, MD can help your child understand why he or she is struggling and develop effective coping skills to manage and reduce anxiety.
Your Child Can Learn To Effectively Manage Difficult Emotions, Stress And Fears
There is no one-size-fits-all treatment for anxiety in children, and the therapists at The Counseling Center will work with you to identify the most effective therapy approach for your child’s specific needs. We offer a safe, child-friendly environment and warm, compassionate counseling so your child can feel supported as he or she explores overwhelming or confusing thoughts and emotions. By using a collaborative approach and creating a tailored treatment plan, your child can learn to understand why he or she feels uncomfortable and how to effectively manage stress and anxiety.
Anxiety can leave your child feeling confused and isolated, and it is important that he or she feel supported throughout the counseling process. In order to help your child feel secure during sessions, we ask that you, the parents, take an active and involved role in his or her anxiety treatment. When your child sees that you trust the therapist and that our office is a fun, safe space, he or she is more likely to attend and participate in counseling sessions. And, by bringing you in at the end of every session, you can see what we have been working on and learn how to build on those skills at home.
We use a solution-focused approach when treating anxiety in children, fostering an informative, hopeful and individualized counseling experience for both you and your child. We can help your child better understand his or her experience and learn developmentally appropriate definitions for anxiety, worry and stress. In addition, we provide practical communication skills and behavior management techniques to help you support your child between sessions. When you are able to recognize your child’s strengths and talk with him or her about challenges, you can help him or her learn to recognize and more effectively manage anxiety.
Anxiety and anxiety attacks can be mild or more severe, and knowing how to respond to different levels of anxiety can help you give your child the guidance and support he or she needs. Techniques like deep breathing, scaling, worry boxes and thought-stopping give you and your child tools to take down his or her anxiety temperature and calm physical symptoms. We use research-based therapy approaches like play therapy and Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) to help your child recognize and address anxious thoughts or emotions before they become overwhelming. If your child’s anxiety is driven by trauma we may incorporate EMDR Therapy, a treatment approach shown to help individuals process and recover from physical and/or emotional trauma.
For more than 20 years, The Counseling Center has helped families develop strategies and practical skills to manage anxiety in children. In addition to providing one-on-one counseling, we may suggest group sessions as an effective supplement to help your child see that he or she is not the only one struggling with anxiety. With the right guidance and support, your child can recognize and alleviate anxiety symptoms, communicate his or her needs and enjoy a happier and more satisfied future.
But, you may still have questions about counseling for anxiety in children…
My child refuses to attend counseling.
Many children want to find anxiety relief, but worry that a therapist will be mean, get mad or won’t like them. Others have been anxious for so long that they feel like they have adapted and can handle anxiety on their own. If your child is refusing to attend sessions, we can work with you to develop a plan that encourages him or her to start attending. When you, the parents, meet and approve of the therapist, your child can feel safer and more secure communicating with his or her counselor. You can also report back to your child that our office is full of toys, games and art supplies – a place where they can have fun as well as learn and feel supported.
I’ve heard that counseling for anxiety in children can be expensive and take a lot of time.
Anxiety in children represents a serious obstacle to their happiness and well-being, and recovery may take time. But, if anxiety has begun limiting your child’s life, therapy is an important investment in your child’s future as well as his or her current happiness. In addition, we use a progress-based approach to help you achieve your goals and reach a point where you no longer need counseling.
Can my child learn to manage his or her anxiety without medication?
Anxiety in children is a challenging but treatable condition, and it is very rare that we suggest medication as part of our treatment plan. However, if your child still feels uncomfortable or stuck after several months of strategic counseling – especially if there is a family history of anxiety – we may recommend that you seek a medication evaluation with a qualified physician as a part of your child’s treatment.
Your Child Can Live Free Of Heightened Anxiety
You can gain the resources and skills to help your child more effectively manage anxiety. If you still have questions about counseling for anxiety in children, we invite you to call 410-583-7443 to schedule a free, no obligation 15-mi