When it comes to treating mental problems, mainly anxiety in teens and children, Social media platforms like Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook are the bane of therapists’ treatment or work.
Everyone or everything can be turned into something negative, teens are exposed to all that day after day, and it’s not good for them at all. Anxiety is a leading mental health issue among youths, and it is rising at a very high pace. The report by the National Survey of Children’s Health shows a 20% growth in cases of anxiety between 2007 and 2012.
The data among 18 and 19 years old is even more shocking. Since 1985, the Higher Education Research Institute has been asking college students if they “felt overwhelmed” by all they had to do. In the first year, 18% of them replied yes. By 2000, that went up to 28%. By 2016, to almost 41%.
The causes of anxiety in kids also include pressure in classrooms, School is putting a lot of pressure on the children with competitiveness. For example, an 8th grader admitted as an inpatient, saying he had to choose a career when all he should do in 8th grade is be himself and live his life. Anxiety issues can be very serious for young people’s socializing, learning, and ability to do everyday tasks.
Anxiety problems have a variety of symptoms:
If, over a particular period, your child shows emotional, behavioral, and thinking symptoms,
Emotional and Behavioral symptoms
- Feeling tense, restless, agitated, or cannot stop worrying – your child may look unable to relax.
- Starts avoiding new or tough situations, or have a problem facing new challenges in life.
- Seems to be very sensitive to criticism or extremely self-conscious or seems uncomfortable in social situations.
- Looks very shy or becomes isolated and avoids social interaction or any activities that include communication with others.
- Going to the washroom more than usual.
- Having tense or sore muscles.
- Having a problem sleeping, staying asleep, or waking early without any cause.
- Have problems like chest pain, headaches, sweating, stomach aches, dry mouth, vomiting, nausea, or diarrhea.
- Feeling breathless or short of air while breathing.
If your kid is showing any signs of anxiety, there are some general techniques you can try at home to calm them. If they are under therapy or any kind of professional treatment, you should discuss these with the doctors first.
- Listen to their fears – never ignore them. Let them know that you’re there with them whenever they need your support. Just tell them, we’ve got your back kid!!
- Wait for your child to get anxious before you say or do anything.
- Calmly and gently encourage your child to do things he’s anxious about. But never force them to face anything they don’t want to face.
- Praise them for little things, they feel anxious about.
- Stop labeling them as ‘shy’ or ‘anxious’. Start referring to them as ‘brave’ or anything positive. After all, they are also trying hard to overcome the situation.
Their recovery from anxiety will have some ups and downs. Many young teenagers who experience an episode of anxiety will for sure have another episode or go through some symptoms again in their life.
No-one is to blame for the setbacks. Go back to health experts and find new ways to manage anxious feelings and thoughts.
Types of Anxiety disorders and problems in teenagers:
- Social Phobia or Social anxiety disorder is a very intense fear of social situations or fear of being judged or being embarrassed in front of everyone.
- General Anxiety disorder is due to excessive worrying about everyday situations.
- Panic disorder is unexpected or repeated panic attacks. A panic attack is an overwhelming feeling of panic in a situation where most people would not be panicked or afraid.
- An emotional or nervous breakdown is when you suddenly start crying for no reason. All the emotions anxiety disorder may cause frequent explosions of tears.
If your friend, child, or anyone is going through any of these symptoms, just make them feel that they are not alone in this, make them feel happy and confident. Give them a tight hug and tell them that you have got their back, and everything will be fine.