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Anxiety and Stress Disorders (Children)

Classroom Anxiety

01/09/2006

Question:

I have an 8 year old son who I believe suffers for Generalized Anxiety. We went through the first three months of school with no problems at all, and then all of the sudden he doesn`t want to ride the bus and is afraid that his teacher won`t be there and they will have a sub. I have asked all the questions, ( is someone teasing you, or bullying you, or did you get in trouble) He answers no to all of these questions. I just can`t understand what has brought this on. He did this last year to for about three weeks and then it just disappeared. I have not taken him to a doctor because I prefer not to have him on medication. What can I do to help him get over this before I lose my mind?

Answer:

It does sound like your child has an anxiety problem.  Whether or not his anxiety has been precipitated by the environment is often difficult to determine. Never the less the treatment for this problem involves consistent direction and intervention by the family. Both behavioral treatments and medication treatments are equally effective in dealing with this type of problem but it requires expertise and training as well as the cooperation of both your child and the family for success.  I would consult your family physician for a referral to a treatment specialist

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Response by:

Floyd R Sallee, MD
Professor
College of Medicine
University of Cincinnati