What To Do (And Not Do) When Kids Are Anxious
When children are anxious, it's natural to want to make them feel better. The greatest method to assist children in overcoming anxiety is to educate them on coping with it when it arises. The goal is that they will eventually get less anxious with practice. Further, when children are worried, even the most knowledgeable parents, who do not want their children to suffer, might worsen their child's worry. This can happen when parents attempt to shield their children from their concerns. Here are some tips for assisting kids in breaking the cycle of anxiety. These tips include reading anxiety books for Kids, respecting their emotions - not empowering them, and other do's and dont's.
To simplify this we’ve created an infographic that includes the dos and don'ts in separate columns. We will then describe each briefly.
These are just some tips that you can use. Let’s read about them in more detail to understand each point.
Hug And Empathize With An Anxious Child
We sometimes underestimate the power of the human touch. Physical contact increases the release of oxytocin, a feel-good hormone, and decreases cortisol, a stress hormone. Thus, a lengthy embrace might lessen the anxiety in young children, make them feel better in the present, and restore calmness.
Moreover, it helps to empathize with your child. Feeling stressed and worried is natural, and anxious youngsters must hear this frequently. Whisper compassionate remarks to your child while holding them tightly and waiting for their bodily sensations to fade. Once your child is relaxed, you may also discuss how hugging yourself or clasping your hands together can truly help you control the physical feelings of anxiousness.
Do Not Eradicate Anxiety But Assist A Kid In Managing It
Nobody wants to watch a child suffer, but the greatest way to assist children in overcoming anxiety isn't to attempt to eliminate the stresses that cause it. Instead, the goal is to assist them in learning to deal with their anxiety and operate as effectively as possible. This practice will gradually lessen anxiety in young children.
After reading this, you may have a question about how to help a child with anxiety or how to make them learn to cope with stress. You can buy our anxiety book for children—Andie & the Worries. Andie, the elephant, has a happy life in the jungle with his friends and family. But Andie has a habit of worrying a lot.
This book illustrates how Andie copes with worries. It also tells how Andie digs a "worry hole" and practices mindfulness with friends and family. This anxiety book for kids will help them control their fears.
Also Read: Finding Mental Health Resources For Kids
Make Them Move From What If To What Is
Humans are capable of time travel, something you may not be aware of. In truth, we spend a lot of mental energy planning for the future. This form of mental time travel might worsen anxiety in already anxious people. A typical time traveler wonders, "What if I can't access my locker and miss class?" "What if Suzy doesn't say anything to me today?"
According to research, returning to the present moment might help ease this tendency. Mindfulness exercises are one excellent way to do this. How? Such practices shift a child's focus from what if to what is. Try teaching your child to focus on their breath for a few minutes to help them have a sound mind.
Do Not Avoid Things Just Because They Make Your Child Anxious
We usually ask ourselves when to worry about child anxiety. And if we do not get the right answer, we start helping children avoid the things they are scared of. This may help them feel better in the short term, but it will worsen their anxiety in the long run. Imagine a youngster in an unpleasant scenario gets unhappy and begins to weep – not to be manipulative, but simply because that is how they feel. The child will learn how his parents will treat him in this situation. And, if they whisk them away or remove the fear-inducing objects, he will comprehend this coping mechanism. And there is a possibility that the cycle will repeat itself.
Try To Keep The Waiting Period As Brief As Possible
Another rule of thumb for parents to reduce anxiety in young children is to strive to remove or decrease the anticipation period as much as possible. If your child is nervous about going to a doctor's visit, you don't want to start talking about it two hours before you leave. This is likely to aggravate your child. So simply try to keep that time as brief as possible.
Respect Their Emotions, But Don't Empower Them
It's critical to remember that validation does not necessarily imply agreement. So, if a child is afraid of going to the doctor because they need a shot, you don't want to dismiss their anxieties. However, you also don't want to exaggerate them. You want to listen and be empathic to them, help them understand why they're worried, and encourage them to believe they can overcome their worries. To make them comfortable, you can say things like, "I know you're terrified, and that's alright, and I'm here to help you get through this."
A Word From Silver Linnig Stuffies
Although assisting your child with their anxiety can be daunting and stressful for many, the good news is that they can learn to manage it. Following these tactics while providing connection and support can help to empower your child. They will learn that their parents will listen to their problems and provide resources like early reader books - showing that their parents offer support and validate their feelings.