Anxiety and mood disorders in children

Tess Thompson

With the pressures of society coming down heavily on our children, anxiety and mood disorders have become extremely prevalent. Though the term 'anxiety and mood disorder' is used quite broadly at times, it has been shown that signs of clinical anxiety and mood disorders can be identified very early in life. If treated well, the consequences of these disorders can be mitigated to a large extent and in some cases the full onset of the condition can be avoided completely.

The physical symptoms that manifest themselves during anxiety or a panic attack are headache, sweating and nausea. Other psychological symptoms are a feeling of nervousness and fear that may trigger the instinct of escape. Such situations can actually impair learning and developmental landmarks in a child's life.

There are various kinds of anxiety disorders in children. These include panic disorder, obsessive-compulsive disorder, posttraumatic stress disorder and social and specific phobia among others. It helps to understand each of these anxiety disorders in detail so that you can identify telltale signs of these specific issues that may show up in the behavior of your children. Providing immediate natural treatments for anxiety may help in leading to a situation wherein you may never have to use strong medication.

Panic disorder includes repeated and sudden panic attacks that include intense fear and a desperate need to escape from a situation. Generally a panic attack is short lived and its physical manifestations include palpitations, nausea, choking, dizziness and loosing control among others.

Obsessive-compulsive disorder involves fits that last longer and need patience. They include one or more obsessions or compulsions that the person will not let go of. This bipolar disorder involves obsessions like repeated doubts, cleanliness, being structured and lewd sexual imagery. Certain compulsive behaviors like washing hands, checking that doors are locked a number of times before leaving the house, counting rituals and using handkerchief or tissue to touch objects are also characteristic of this disorder.

Posttraumatic disorder occurs due to the repeated remembrance of a traumatic experience. This causes perturbing dreams and thoughts and can cause extreme anxiety. Social or specific phobias include avoidance of any social gathering or avoidance of specific situations. Some specific disorders can involve phobias of certain objects, insects or animals that lead to panic attacks when exposed to them.

Mood disorders include depression and bipolar mood disorders. Depression is an extended feeling of sadness along with hopelessness and extreme lack of interest in any activity whereas bipolar disorders are typically manic-depressive in nature wherein a phase of depression is followed by an elevated sense of euphoria.

Having understood these symptoms of anxiety and mood disorders, you should ensure that you detect these symptoms as soon as they appear in your children. Timely panic attack treatments and herbal remedies for manic-depressive states can ensure that some cases can be treated such that they never reach an extreme condition. In such cases, the need for strong chemical medication that has various side effects can also be avoided.

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