Source: Indys Child Parenting Magazine

10 Anxiety-Busting Tips for Kids

by Carrie Bishop

November 01, 2011

Kids face a lot of pressures. Whether itís to perform perfectly in school or look a certain way, digest family financial problems or process the daily news, anxiety builds in many young people. Following are tips that may help you help your child bust his anxiety.

1. Read books or watch movies together about whatever issue is making your child feel anxious. Then discuss how the characters dealt with the stress.

2. When it comes to phobias, Elizabeth C. White, licensed mental health counselor and licensed school counselor with the Well Counseling and Consulting Group, says talk with your child about all versus nothing and the importance of meeting in the middle. If your child is afraid of dogs, reaffirm that some dogs are dangerous and itís reasonable to have a healthy fear of the animals; yet, not every dog is bad. Let your child know you are going to help him know when these times are.

3. White says kids can get nervous during test time. Itís important parents embrace an A, B or even C grade. Show that your love is not conditional.

4. A child can relieve tension by squeezing a stress ball, shaking his hands, or moving his head to get out jitters during times of stress.

5. Jessie Fogle, licensed clinical social worker at Meridian Youth Psychiatric Center, says parents sometimes forget children need to relax. Help your child learn to breathe deeply and encourage him to do things just for fun.

6. Before bed, turn off the computer, TV, smart phone and other technology to help your child decompress.

7. Limit your childís ability to watch repetitive news advises Susan Oxfurth, licensed social worker with North Meridian Psychiatric Associates. It can be unsettling.

8. Acknowledge your childís anxious feelings. His feelings may be different than yours, but they are his and are important to him.

9. Have your child take a break from stressors and do something he enjoys like spending time with his pet, listening to music or talking with a friend.

10. Make sure your child eats healthy food regularly and gets adequate exercise.