Anxiety Specialist

Little Wonders Pediatric Therapy

Occupational Therapy & Speech Therapy located in Charlotte, NC

More than one in 20 children lives with an anxiety disorder that interferes with their ability to develop new skills and lead a fulfilling life. At Little Wonders Pediatric Therapy in Charlotte, North Carolina, Danielle McDaniel, MOT, OTR/L, and her team offer customized occupational and speech therapy to help your child cope with anxiety and thrive. Call Little Wonders Pediatric Therapy to make an appointment today.

Anxiety Q & A

What are the signs that my child has anxiety?

Feeling nervous is a normal part of life. Just as you might feel a little stressed or anxious about a project at work, your child could have similar feelings about tests at school. This type of anxiety actually helps you — and your child — focus and put in the effort needed to succeed. However, when anxiety interferes with your child’s ability to play and learn, you and your child may need to talk to a professional.

Anxiety often shows up in children as:

  • Agitation or restlessness
  • Somatic symptoms like stomach aches and headaches
  • Avoidance behaviors or trying to stay home from school
  • Tantrums, including meltdowns before school about inconsequential issues like socks
  • High expectations for academic or athletic performance
  • Repeated behaviors or phrases
  • Delayed social skill development

 

Your child might demonstrate these behaviors occasionally, but if their negative, anxious behaviors become more common or intense, they may suffer from anxiety.

 

What causes anxiety in children?

Many factors contribute to anxiety in children. Life experiences such as loss, serious illness, bullying, or other types of abuse can trigger anxious feelings and behaviors. They may also learn to be anxious and fearful by observing the actions of others.

Genetic factors and their brain chemistry can make a child more prone to anxiety. For example, if another family member has anxiety or another mental health disorder, your child has a higher risk of developing anxiety.

 

How can occupational therapy benefit my child with anxiety?

At Little Wonders Pediatric Therapy, occupational therapists help your child learn strategies to manage stress and anxiety so that their negative thoughts and emotions don’t interfere with their development. During occupational therapy sessions for anxiety, your therapist and child work on:

  • Sensory processing and integration
  • Establishing routines and habits
  • Practicing activities that help your child relax and find pleasure
  • Stress management techniques
  • Self-esteem development

 

Occupational therapy helps your child develop social skills and confidence to establish strong and supportive relationships with other family members, teachers, and peers.

If you’re concerned that your child has anxiety and that it’s interfering with their development, call Little Wonders Pediatric Therapy today.

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