Your child explodes when he comes home from school. You spend hours trying to get him to bed. You have been dealing with mysterious stomach issues that have stumped your pediatrician. These are the subtle signs of child anxiety that are often missed.
Watching your child go through a panic attack can be overwhelming. In this episode we explore ways to help your child through a panic attack.
I know you are watching me. I can see your worried face out of the corner of my eye. It is the same face that greets me in the morning as I count my steps to breakfast and it is the same face that kisses me good night as I stand in front of the sink, unable to feel clean. I know parenting a kid with OCD is not easy.
Your child is doing it again. That weird quirk. You cringe every time you see it. You tell her to stop. She tries, but there it is again. You tell yourself, it will pass. They all do. It’s always something different. Today it is some weird eye blinking and maybe next month she’ll blow into her hands. You’ve stopped keeping track of how many “strange habits” she has had or how long they last. But what if they aren’t “strange habits?”
What if they aren’t tics?
In this episode I talk about the 4 things parents often get wrong about childhood OCD. I talk about child OCD myths and misperceptions.
“No!” Your child screams. Her eyes wide and her pulse racing. You have seen her like this before. Her deer caught in headlights expression. She is paralyzed with fear. You are paralyzed with confusion. Should you make her? Should you give in to her fears? You second guess your next move. What will make this better, not just for today, but forever? This anxiety battle is draining and you don’t know how much more you can take. More importantly, you don’t know how much more she can take. How are you supposed to parent anxious children?
What is the relationship between anxiety and eating? More than you would think! Learn how you can impact your child’s anxiety, by changing their diet.
Researchers confirm that fear (or that worry that stems from fear) cannot co-exist with feelings of gratitude. When consumed with anxiety, we ultimately may feel like our lives or livelihood or our very character is in danger. Though we may not have a true life-threatening situation, our brain interprets a threat to our core relationships or our identity the same as if we were about to be killed in the street. Our brain reads, “mortal danger!” But when we are examining the abundance around us including the friendships, the family members, our health and our home, it cancels out those worries. We realize we are safe and secure. We realize we are loved. And we are better able to focus on responding to challenges in ways that are constructive and positive.
I watch my seven-year-old son wring his hands. “But I am not going to have enough time!” He cries. He just got home from school. “Time for what?” I ask. “Time to play outside. Time to play on my tablet. Time to eat a snack…” He rambles on. He has four hours until bedtime. He has nowhere to be and a five-minute worksheet to complete. His worry is irrational. He constantly obsesses about time. And he is not alone, anxious kids pour into my office week after week complaining about the same thing – time.
What do a bag of chips and loud crunching do to your kids? If you said throw them into a rage, we should talk. Did you know that some of us are triggered by noises? I am not talking about being slightly annoyed, I am talking about an urge to go completely ballistic when hearing these sounds. Let me introduce you to the world of sound rage, better known as Misophonia. Don’t know what that is? Take the Misophonia quiz below to see if it sounds familiar.
She mentioned her stomach hurts for the hundredth time today. Her face lights up when I tell her I am going to take her to the doctor. “When!” She beams, her little body covered in band-aids. I am concerned. My five-year-old is consumed with her health. “Do I have a fever?” She asks. “Do you think I am sick?” She questions. Unfortunately, I have seen this behavior before. As a child therapist, I know exactly where we are headed. We are entering the world of health anxiety.
“You just need to stop babying him!” “She’ll grow out of it. My kids did that too.” “She just needs a good spanking!” Sound familiar? These comments can make your blood boil – and they should! Unsolicited opinions are the worst. But sometimes they aren’t from strangers. Sometimes these comments can come from your closest friends, your aging parents or even your partner. Just because you are related, doesn’t mean they are instantly going to get your anxious child.
In this week’s episode of Ask the Child Therapist, I am answering the question, “How can I help my child with perfectionism?” From perfectionist toddlers to perfectionist teens – children who strive to be perfect are over stressed. Child perfectionism causes tantrums, meltdowns and late nights full of worries. Does your child show signs of perfectionism? Here are some quick tips on how to help.
It is that time of year again – frenzied shopping, experimental baking and party after party. Holidays are many people’s favorite time of year. I love everything about the holidays – except the over stimulation and pace that turns my otherwise well-behaved little children – into gremlins, causing holiday meltdowns.