Being a kid doesn’t mean being carefree all the time – even the youngest tots worry. Find out what stresses your kids out and how to help them cope.
Anxiety is a normal part of life and a very common mental health problem, affecting up to 20 per cent of children and adolescents. “As children grow, they go through different stages of anxiety. For instance, a young child becomes anxious when separated from their parents or carers. Separation anxiety gradually eases off at around two to three years old,” says Azhar Napis, a consultant paediatrician at Columbia Asia Hospital Iskandar Puteri.
Though some stress is normal – it gives us the drive to push ourselves harder to achieve our goals – too much of it causes more harm than good. “Stress becomes problematic when a child’s daily activities become affected. They may refuse to go to school, have poor appetite, and not sleep well at night,” explains Azhar. Some children who are overwhelmed by stress even withdraw from their family and society, resulting in poor self esteem and a lack of confidence.
“Seek help when your child exhibits behaviour that deviates from their usual character,” says Azhar. If your child’s anxiety persists or interferes with daily life, get help as soon as possible. Azhar suggests using these ways to help your child cope with stress.
1 LISTEN TO YOUR CHILD
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