When it comes to taking care of your child, there are some conditions like the flu and the common cold that you can try to prevent and others that you have no control over. Anxiety is one of those conditions that you have no control over when it comes to whether your child will develop the condition. While most people do not associate mental health conditions with children, many children do suffer from them. Get to know some of the signs that your child may have anxiety so you can contact their pediatrician for help as soon as possible if you think your child might have the condition.
Your Child Has Difficulty with Sleep
One of the signs that your child may have anxiety is having trouble sleeping. This can include issues with either falling or staying asleep (or both). Children with anxiety may have trouble falling asleep because of racing or obsessive thoughts as they are trying to go to sleep. They may start thinking about everything that could go wrong in their life. They could also start obsessively counting their breaths or something similar that keeps them from being able to relax and fall asleep.
Children with anxiety are also sometimes prone to vivid dreams or nightmares that might disturb their sleep once they have finally fallen asleep. They could also sleep lightly rather than deeply, making them more prone to waking in the night. If your child has any of these issues, there is a possibility they are suffering from anxiety.
Your Child Gets Grumpy Out of Nowhere
All children get grumpy or grouchy from time to time. However, there is usually a reason (being overly tired and needing a nap, getting told "no," etc.). However, children with anxiety issues may turn grumpy out of the blue for no apparent reason. They may be happy and enjoying themselves one minute and suddenly turn sullen and sad. They may even lash out in anger and irritability all of a sudden.
These sudden changes in mood may be attributable to anxiety. If they suddenly start worrying about something, get a panic attack, or otherwise have an increase in anxiety, it is understandable that their mood might shift. Try to keep track of how often these sudden and unexpected mood shifts occur in your child. If it happens frequently (every day or even every week), you may be dealing with an anxious child.
If you know these potential signs of anxiety, you can be sure that you are able to detect early signs of anxiety in your child. If you have noticed these issues, contact a pediatrician right away for an official diagnosis and treatment options.