Worried. Nervous. Scared. All signs of anxiety. Parents sometimes these observations about their children in periods of anxiety:
"I've got butterflies in my stomach."
"My stomach hurts, I want to come home."
"He just gets so upset over the littlest things."
"She feels like her throat closes up when she gets upset."
"He wants things just so, if you move one of his toys he loses it. "
"She worries about everything."
Moments of intense panic or frequent worries can be a sign of a mood regulation problem. Mood regulation is like an air condition thermostat. Everyone is set at a different level. Some people have a low level of tolerance, other people have a high level of tolerance.
Problems with frequent worries or complaints aboiut stomach aches can be a sign that a child anxiety level is easily triggered. Small things can start a spiral of worry that gets worse and worse as the child worries non-stop about something.
Think again about a thermostat and air conditioner. Many factors decide if an air conditioner will start to blow. Is it 100 degrees outside? How people are there in the house? Are all the doors and windows open? What sort of insulation is in the walls?
Mood regulation can be thought of in the same way. Many factors go into if a child can tolerate certain stresses or not. How's school going? What's going on in the family? What sort of coping skills does a child have?
Learning new coping skills and distraction techniques can be important ways to keep stressors from piling higher. If a mood regulation problem like anxiety is present than medication can help restore the balance in mood regulation.
Some things to consider:
Problems with anxiety is the basis for a number of different problems: separation anxiety, school avoidance, generalized anxiety, panic disorder, and obsessive compulsive disorder.
Frequent stomach aches and other physical complaints can be a sign of an anxiety problem.
"Butterflies in my stomach" is a real example of how emotional anxiety can cause a physical problem in a child's body.
Children can show signs of obsessive compulsive disorder at a young age.
Counseling and therapy can help children overcome their anxiety problems.
Medication can help increase a child's emotional reserve and reduce anxiety problems.