I see a lot of anxious children in my practice. Often their parents did not immediately recognize their children’s anxiety or did not realize how much it was affecting them.
Here are a few early signs of anxiety in children that may be cause for further evaluation or therapy:
Anxiety in children can often look like extreme irritability. Does your child always seem “on edge” or “tightly wound”? They could actually be experiencing anxiety.
Perfectionism is often related to anxiety. If your child seems overly concerned about doing tasks correctly, won’t turn in work unless it’s perfect, misses school or events due to worrying about their performance, or is easily upset over minor failures or imperfections, there may be underlying anxiety to address.
If your child is having trouble falling or staying asleep, or tells you that they have trouble quieting their mind at night, it may be a sign of anxiety. Excessive worries may be making it difficult for your child to fall asleep.
This can go hand in hand with lack of sleep, but it can also be a result of your child’s mind being in a constant state of worry and stress. If your child seems exhausted regularly without an underlying medical cause, it could be related to anxiety.
I hope this helps identify some of the signs of anxiety in your child. If you see these signs in your child or you are concerned that anxiety may be a problem for your child, seek a qualified counselor or therapist in your area.