Anxiety attacks in children at night can be a very troubling and trying time for parents. Not only will it affect your sleep, but having it affect the child’s can lead to much larger problems each day, and the more it compounds the worse things can be. So how can you stop it? How can you help your child cope and deal with whatever it is that is causing them to have these anxiety attacks?
The answer is not simple, but it is one that needs to be found so that your child and your family can start on a path of healing, to get back to some normalcy. The first thing to do is to figure out what could be causing the anxiety attacks in your child. They can be happening to young children, or even young adults going through the turbulence of high school. Frustrations and difficult times in social relationships at school can be a gigantic source for anxiety, if they are not dealt with, the feelings can escalate and interfere with their daily activities, not to mention, if left unchecked, can be life threatening.
Discover the problem: Regardless of the age group you need to discover the problem. This can be accomplished by talking to them, though you may hit a road block here, especially if you are dealing with a teenager, you have to try. In younger children ask them if they know what is causing their fears. For some children who have experienced loss or the threat of loss (of a parent or loved one), the idea of mortality can be a frightening thing – it can cause OCD symptoms to such severity you may try to seek out professional help. While this is recommended if you feel you cannot cope on your own, many have found this route to be ineffective (though every case is different). Talking is often the best result, if the fears are revealed to you then you can start helping to put them at ease. If these fears are about school or perhaps the potential loss of a loved one, discuss ‘what if’ scenarios. Without going into greatly dark scenarios you can sometimes put their mind at ease by walking them through what would happen if…sometimes their anxiety is as simple as wondering what would happen if you didn’t pick them up from school.
In teenagers, discovering the problem may be more difficult, you may have to speak to friends or family members to get to the reason, but even if you are left in the dark you can be a support to them and help them relieve their anxiety by offering assistance and perhaps help from homeopathic remedies.
Approximately 5-10% of children struggle with anxiety, among this percentage, children with ADHD the rate is even higher. Recognizing that they have a problem isn’t always easy, but for children who are suffering from anxiety attacks at night it is usually a disruption to the household and obvious that intervention is needed. Anxious kids can be quiet, shy, cautious and withdrawn, however they also may act out with tantrums and disobedience. Children with separation anxiety experience fear of being separated from their home and parents, they may show signs of panic, refusal to go to school or be clingy to a parent. Just thinking about being separated can cause them to have an anxiety attack, and these can often occur at night with the thoughts that tomorrow they will be separated again (some don’t even want to be separated in order to sleep).
If the anxiety attacks in children at night are caused by any of the above issues they can be dealt with by providing support, love and assurance. If something further is needed, homeopathic remedies that can cure anxiety symptoms and/or seeking the help of a counselor who can help you learn how to deal with the issue may be used. Most children who suffer anxiety at night however do grow out of it.