8 Ways to Help Calm an Anxious Child

It can be hard to witness a child who is dealing with chronic anxiety; and, unfortunately, recent statistics indicate that the number of children experiencing anxiety and anxiety-related symptoms is on the rise. According to the Center for Disease Control, approximately 4.4 million of children in the U.S. had a diagnosed anxiety disorder in 2012, which was an increase from previous years. While anxiety might show up differently in every child, there are similar ways that parents and caregivers can respond to help ease the symptoms. By utilizing the strategies below, the goal is not to “fix” the source of stress, rather show children healthier, alternative behaviors to cope with anxiety.

Making Time for Connection

“How much time each day do you connect with your kids?” This is a question I ask all the parents I work with in family therapy. Most parents understand this as any interaction between them and their child. I usually have to clarify the word “connect.” When I say connect, I mean an intentional, set apart time to talk or play with your children throughout the day.

What is Behind Attachment?"

“Attachment” is quite a hot word these days It’s not only in the therapeutic community but in the parenting community as well. In regards to parenting, there are hundreds of blogs that come up when you Google “attachment parenting.” The blogs are full of posts about co-sleeping, baby wearing and breast-feeding; and while these components can be important, these blogs are often lacking in the research behind the techniques.