General Anxiety Disorder is a very common mental disorder, yet it is sometimes difficult to understand. What is anxiety? What separates anxiety from feeling worried about something? This blog was written with parents in mind to help them understand what anxiety is and how to help their children who are struggling from it.
What is Anxiety?
Anxiety is defined as having an intense amount of fear about problems that will emerge in the future. This fear limits the things you are able to accomplish and becomes a major hurdle to living a normal life. It can start out as little worries and anxiousness but then grow into something much worse. A real life example of this was shown by a young girl. She began with having normal worries common for a girl her age: Is my homework all done for school tomorrow or is my favorite outfit set out. Unfortunately, these thoughts evolved into something more serious that became harder for her to handle. These worries became thoughts of dread as she worried what others thought of her homework, how was she going to react to certain situations, or if someone was making fun of her outfit. These thoughts evolved into her trying to avoid her problems entirely. She stopped going to social activities because she was scared of what people thought of her or how she would react in a given situation. Her grades began to drop and she began to struggle in school. Physical symptoms began to manifest as well as she began to experience stomach aches and headaches. She found she couldn’t focus on her schoolwork or her friends because the fears became too strong.
How to Help
When her parents noticed her grades slipping off, they got her in contact with a school therapist. Through treatment, she was able to move past the fear and anxiety that crippled her. She was able to gain control of her life and learned skills to help her manage the anxiety. This girl’s story is something that is, unfortunately, common in today’s society. If you feel your daughter struggles with anxiety, one of the most helpful things that you can do is to speak with her in a non-confrontational, non-judgemental way to discuss what is going on with her and to validate those feelings. These discussions can help you and her understand where these feelings are coming from and what is triggering them. Building off this information, you can seek professional help so your daughter can learn how to manage these fears behind her anxiety so she can heal. At Sunrise Residential Treatment Center, we are dedicated to helping girls who struggle with disorders like Anxiety. If you feel that your daughter is in need of the help that our center offers, please call us at 866-754-4807.