As a child I often worried about minor things in life, like reaching school on time, or getting my homework done on time. It could be because I hated being the center of anybody’s attention. I just wanted to blend in with the general crowd. These feelings were overwhelming and this feeling in common language can be termed as ‘ Anxiety ‘.
Today many kids may be experiencing some kind of stress or anxiety which they may not be even aware of. They may not even know what is triggering these feelings, emotions or anxiety. These feelings can play havoc with a child’s mental health. Rapid changes that take place in a child’s life could be one of the reasons. I think it’s vital, that every kid knows how to deal with stress or it could grab the happiness away from his or her life.
One of the most common form of anxiety that children face is called ‘ Generalized Anxiety ‘. In this category the kid may feel stressed about minor situations like getting their home work done or worrying about their studies, exams and so on. Though it may seem amusing to people who have not experienced this disorder, but to the child it’s an unbearable feeling. The best part is that you may not even know that the child is suffering from anxiety.
It’s not known what triggers these emotions in them. I feel that rapid change of events that take place in their lives could probably be one of the reasons. According to researchers brain biochemistry, stressful situations in life, family atmosphere play a vital role in a child’s mental health.
The burden of studies, extra curricular activities and meeting the expectations of Parents, all this added together, put a lot of pressure on children these days. My heart goes out to them. The best we can do is to look out for signs. The body sends out signals and if we can catch hold of them in time, we could play a significant role in enhancing the mental health of our kids. I’ve listed a few signs below.
* Worrying excessively about minor things.
* Having trouble sleeping at night.
* Avoiding going to school and social gatherings.
* Fatigue and feeling lousy throughout the day.
* Irritability and behavioral problems
* Low grades
The above signs are good enough to wake us up and extend our support to them. We can even turn to therapists and counsellors for support and therapy. The younger generation are more open to taking therapy from counsellors and therapists. Meeting therapists is no more considered a taboo, unlike before where visiting one was considered shameful. Therapists exactly know how to detect the disorder and treat it with or without medications depending on the severity of the problem.
Many students face stress in their day to day lives and they are not open to discuss it with their own families. There are still many families that are closed in. Children and especially many girls, are brought up in a disciplined and a restrictive atmosphere. Such youngsters would require either someone whom they could confide their problems to or they could choose to discuss their problems to school counsellors.
School counsellors should be provided at schools, so that students gain the freedom and choice to talk to them comfortably about their issues which could be studies, health, coping up with exams, friendships and so on. The counsellors could even be their own teachers. But the student’s privacy must be maintained. These minor anxiety disorders should not be a hindrance to the growth and development of a child. With a little support from family and counsellors our kids could enjoy a whole and a meaningful life.
I’m Diana Pinto mother of a three-year-old son. I’m a housewife and a blogger. My interests include listening to music, dancing and now of course writing. I’ve developed an interest in writing recently and hope to inspire people and bring a change through it. I blog at Diana’s musings.