By Souls of Silver
Growing children are often aware of the emotional reactions they experience and these reactions can be both negative and positive. But it is the responsibility of the adult to help them navigate and understand those feelings and deal with them.
The continuously evolving feelings may be confusing to them and instead of directly expressing their discomfort they will indicate the symptoms to you, hoping to get your help. Until recently, adults were usually unaware of mental problems in children apart from ADHD and common behavioral problems. Not just children, even adult mental health, especially anxiety problems were not given that much importance.
Statistics say that for every 8 children in the world, one is suffering from anxiety, which ranges from mild to extreme. While it is normal for kids to be scared in new situations and environments, those emotions may soon develop into serious mental illnesses if not explained properly to the children.
As parents, we have to be careful not to miss the early and subtle signs of anxiety in our children. Paying careful attention is the best way but we have to be careful that we don’t go overboard. Unless the child has their own safe space and has trust in you, all help might be futile.
Signs to look out for:
1. Recurrent stomach aches in stress-inducing situations
2. Fidgety behavior
3. Impatient with little things
4. Avoiding stressful social gatherings
5. Delicate mental stability resulting in frequent meltdowns
6. Using biting, scratching, pinching, and other self-harming ways as coping mechanisms
7. Intense concentration on perfectionism
Each individual has his own ways of expression so your child may not always stick to the abovementioned signs. We have to be observant of any and every trigger which induces unusual behavior in them. While social anxiety is most common in children, academic pressure or specific cultural expectations from a young age may also get them to develop anxiety. But if children say that their stomach hurts, it might be a sure sign that they are suffering from anxiety.
Neglect will affect not only their education but also all their future relationships and eventually their general growth in life. Untreated children often feel unworthy, and lack academically, hampering their true potential. This will develop a sort of difficulty in maintaining peer bonding, substance dependency, and ever sleep disturbances. Depression in most adults finds roots in childhood problems of anxiety and trauma.
While the help of parents and family could be helpful and easier for kids, professional help guarantees better success in helping kids cope better. It is wrong to think professional help will only use medicines; therapeutic measures are actually given more importance.
Parents need to always listen to their kids. Observe their behavior and encourage them to express their fears and problems. Neutrally listening to them before jumping to conclusions is the only way to help your child grow up healthily and thus making them better adults.
Make sure your child knows that you are always there to help them feel better!
If you know someone’s children say that their stomach hurts, they might be suffering from anxiety, so please share this news among friends and family and spread the knowledge.