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Got Anxious Kids? Be Brave!


View original article published in Psych Central– Besides being loving and patient, parents need to be brave when their children are anxious. This may be one of the most difficult things you do when you see your kids struggle. In the long run, your courage will be one of the crucial elements in helping your children overcome their anxiety. Listed below are the When, Why, and How of becoming a valiant parent everyday. WHEN do you need to be brave?      WHEN: It seems that for the thousandth time you’ve asked your child to do a simple task and he refuses because he feels overwhelmed. A slight change in her routine sets her off, and you choose not to yell or punish her. He gets injured and his anxiety magnifies his aches and shouts. A meltdow

Mindfulness: The Anchor in the Storm


View original article published in Psych Central – Ships in the harbor need to be anchored as they are brought back from a day at sea. If ships and boats were not secured, they would drift away if a storm were to occur at night. This is an ACT (Acceptance and Commitment Therapy) metaphor to help explain Mindfulness. Quite often mindfulness is misunderstood. Let’s clarify some essential points: Definition of Mindfulness: Jon Kabat-Zinn defines it as: “Paying attention in a particular way: on purpose, in the present moment, and non-judgmentally.” This means that we can learn to purposely notice what is happening in the here-and-now. As we do, we become observers without making evaluations or judgments about events, ourselves, and/or others. T

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What Are the Signs of Depression in Teens?


Quite often, parents misunderstand their adolescents’ symptoms of depression with “just being in a bad mood,” or “personality issues,” or “the time of the month issues,” etc. Yes, we all have those kinds of days. However, when an adolescent is depressed, those symptoms don’t dwindle with time. This is actually a mistake many parents make. Sometimes, they may think it is “just a stage” and wait it out. However, it can only get worse. As you consider the following symptoms, keep in mind that they vary in severity. Depressive symptoms in adolescents: Loss of interest and enjoyment in their favorite activities or other activities. Prefer to be alone rather than with family or kids their age. Have difficulty concentrating at school or other se

Do I Have OCD?


When you worry frequently about things that are outside of your control, or you must have everything in your life organized perfectly, you may start to wonder if you need to see an OCD specialist. While anxiety does not mean that you have OCD, there are signs of OCD that are very difficult to ignore. What is important to remember is that OCD signs and symptoms are on a spectrum. While you may exhibit some signs, it is the degree of prevalence in your life that matters most. For those experiencing primarily mental obsessions, it is difficult to dismiss a random weird thought as non-sufferers do. Individuals with mental obsessions and compulsions will try to pick apart their thoughts in order to figure them out and resist them. They will also

Do’s and Don’ts to Help your Anxious Child


When children are anxious, parents also get anxious because they want to fix their child’s anxiety. As humans we have an amazing mind whose job is to help us solve problems, and we naturally also want to rescue, fix and resolve our children’s pain and struggles. Unfortunately trying to rescue our children from their emotional struggles can often backfire. Below is a list of the most essential Do’s and Don’ts to help you become a more efficient parent to your anxious child: Do’s: Do validate and acknowledge their feelings. Remember that your children’s perception is their reality. Even when you know their fears are unfounded, they need to know you are there for them, you are listening to them and that you care about them. Do meet them halfw

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3 Causes of Anxiety and How to Treat It


Anxiety is a response of the mind and body when there is stress in your life. Feelings of anxiety are present in the lives of most people, and when symptoms of anxiety begin to manifest it’s time to find the best therapy to relieve the symptoms. If you have been dealing with feelings of panic, an overwhelming sense of despair, and you find yourself fearing even the most mundane activities, you may be exhibiting signs of an anxiety disorder. Anxiety from External Events If you are overloaded at work, or you are worried about money, you may be experiencing anxiety caused by external events. A natural disaster can spark anxiety, and it’s important to deal with both the stressor and your response to it. Learning techniques such as m

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What an Anxiety Attack Feels Like


Anxiety attacks are scary for both the one having the attack and those who do not understand what is happening. Each person experiences a different set of symptoms during an attack. There are certain symptoms, however, that are the most common and appear in one combination or another. Common Symptoms The symptoms of severe anxiety often feel like those of a heart attack. These symptoms often include: *Profuse sweating *Chest pain *Fast-beating heart *Trembling *Weak knees The emotional feelings can be even worse. These include: *Intense fear *Feelings of losing your mind *An urge to escape How It May Look For those who are near someone having an anxiety attack, the symptoms may not be as easily recognizable. Those with severe anxiety often

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Four Symptoms of Anxiety


Those who have anxiety in their lives are sometimes triggered by specific events. Other times, it’s just the thought of those events that brings on a wave of nervousness. Anxiety as a whole refers to one or more anxiety disorders. These include among others, generalized anxiety disorder, social anxiety disorder, and panic disorder. As you can imagine, everyone experiences anxiety differently. Symptoms may vary depending on the type of anxiety disorder you have. However, by understanding your symptoms, you can work to reduce anxiety. Here are four of the most common symptoms. Upset Stomach/Nausea One place that anxiety is likely to affect you is your gut. Your stomach may start to churn. You’re likely to feel nauseous. You may feel the need

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What is an Anxiety Disorder?


Anxiety is an unavoidable part of life. We can’t help but be nervous for some big life events, like job interviews, public speaking, and asking someone out. However, for some people, they experience that kind of anxiety much more regularly, sometimes even daily. They may have panic attacks or freak themselves out with their depressive, uncontrollable thoughts. These people may have an anxiety disorder. What Is Anxiety Disorder? Anxiety disorder is a catch-all term that refers to a variety of disorders we’ll explain below. Generally, the symptoms include intrusive worrying about daily life events, exhaustion, inability to sleep, muscle tightness, moodiness, concentration problems, and a sense of restlessness. What Are the Types of Anxiety Di

3 Signs of Anxiety in Children


With child anxiety, it can be hard to differentiate between anxiety symptoms and learned behavior. If your child is consistently struggling with anxiety, it’s important to have your child meet with a professional therapist to address the issue. While you can try a number of anxiety management techniques on your own, a therapist will help identify your child’s anxiety triggers and help you develop a plan to help manage the symptoms more effectively. Your Child Is Struggling in School If your child is having trouble in school, this could be due to anxiety. When they are worried about getting homework done or having trouble making friends, this is often due to feeling anxious. When your child is waking up and doesn’t want to

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