Middle Childhood Intervention: Module Two – Special Needs & Conditions

Category — 2.9 Children with Mental Illness: Anxiety-Based Disorders

Anxiety-Based Disorders

Many children have anxiety-based disorders. Each child may display different symptoms of anxiety, but they all seem share one thing: they worry. Everyone worries every now and then. Children with anxiety disorders worry all the time. Too much worrying becomes a disorder when the feelings of anxiety are so severe and intense they prevent a person from leading a typical life. Often there is no reason for a person to worry, yet he or she continues to do so.

Anxiety-based disorders can have a negative influence on several developmental areas:

  • Cognitive skills: some children with anxiety disorders have low average IQ scores. That is not because of their cognitive abilities. It is usually because their excessive worrying prevents them from concentrating well. Some children may be scared to try new things and learn at a slower rate than their peers. In some children, the anxiety is so severe that it prevents them from paying attention and concentrating;
  • Academic skills: some children with anxiety disorders have trouble with academic skills. This is not because of an inability to learn, but because they are too worried to pay attention and learn. Some children have serious anxiety about taking tests. This keeps  them from performing well on school tests. Anxiety BC has put together a wonderful resource for these children, their families and teachers. It can be downloaded from the following website;
  • Social/emotional skills: children with anxiety disorders may have a low self-esteem and very little self-confidence. They may avoid social situations and activities, after school sports and hanging out with friends. Some may have very few friends and spend a good deal of their time alone.

There are many types of anxiety disorders. The most common ones are covered in this section.

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August 26, 2012   No Comments