Choosing the appropriate child anxiety treatment can really make a difference in how your child handles their anxiety. If your child is showing signs of anxiety, then you may need to find the best way for them to get help. The earlier you notice the problem, the more likely you are to be able to treat it and learn how to manage it. Take the time to find out what you need to know about child anxiety treatment options.
First of all, you need to make sure that your child is getting the anxiety treatment they need from a qualified professional. This may include a full mental health evaluation. Also, if you are worried about addictive behaviors, then your doctor may recommend a full assessment and psychiatric evaluation to help you determine if there are any other health concerns. Once you have made an appointment at a local medical facility or mental health center, then you are ready to decide what you think is going to work best for your child. Here are some options:
Cognitive Behavioral Therapy: A cognitive behavioral therapy is sometimes recommended as the first option for anxiety disorders. The reason this type of therapy works is because it addresses the irrational thoughts, fears, and worries that many people have about specific situations. It helps them to realize that their fears are unfounded. During the process, your child will be taught to identify the source of their anxiety and how it makes them feel.
CBT may also involve a breathing exercise that teaches your child to slow down and deep breathe when they are experiencing an attack. There is also a process called desensitization. This involves slowly exposure to the physical symptoms of anxiety to help your child desensitize themselves to the experience. Another technique is exposure therapy, which involves gradually exposing your child to the anxiety disorder and allowing him or her to manage the anxiety without the intervention of others. Both of these techniques help your child to develop a sense of control over the situation.
Medications: The medications are usually used in more severe cases of anxiety disorders. Your child’s physician will be able to tell you which medications will be appropriate for your child and the dosage of the medications. Some of the most common medications for anxiety treatment are Celexa (Anafranil), Zoloft (Sertraline), and Paxil (Prozac). These medications are effective for managing the physical symptoms of your anxiety disorder but don’t deal with the underlying irrational thinking.
No matter what child anxiety treatment you choose, you should talk with your child thoroughly about the decision so there aren’t complications later on. This type of treatment can be very effective; however, you and your child must be aware that things may not be as easy as they seem initially and you need to prepare for the possible outcome. Keep track of your child’s progress during the course of the treatment so you can monitor how effective the method is. If you think it may be too intense for your child, try something different, such as a different medication.