Anxiety in childhood: Types, Causes, Symptoms, and Treatment

Everyone experiences anxiety, which signals danger or a sudden, threatening change through stirrings of worry, fearfulness, and alarm; however, anxiety can become an exaggerated, unhealthy response. Many children have fears and worries, and they may feel sad and hopeless at times. Strong fears can appear at various stages of development. Here are the various types, causes, symptoms, and treatments for childhood anxiety.

Although fears and worries are common in children, persistent or extreme forms of fear and sadness may be the result of anxiety or depression, and because the symptoms primarily involve thoughts and feelings, they are sometimes referred to as internalizing disorders. Early Age Anxiety can be caused by a variety of factors, and it is becoming more common in preschoolers post-Covid because this age group has been the most isolated, with little to no exposure to the outside world.

These children had no social interaction with their peers, and because they were confined indoors, many of them resorted to their mobile devices for entertainment, which increased their screen time and impacted their overall developmental skills. Regularly attending preschool or going out exposes the child to the concept of social interaction, making them more interactive with their surroundings.



Anxiety can be caused by genetic factors as well as by life stresses. If the problem is severe or persistent, a child psychiatrist or adult psychiatrist should be consulted. Anxiety disorders include the following: Separation Anxiety Disorder, Social Anxiety Disorder, Selective Mutism, Phobia, and panic disorder.


Anxiety is caused by a variety of factors, including genetic predisposition, stressful family environment, alcohol dependence and impulse dyscontrol in the family, heightened emotional expression in the family, parental discord, emotional trauma, disintegrating support networks, high expectations, at times over-provisions, excessive mobile use, disturbed sleep-wake schedule, unhealthy lifestyle with excessive fast food, lack of regular physical exercise/physical sport, and excessive alcohol consumption.


1. Nervous, tense, and unable to sit still.
2. Going to the bathroom on a regular basis.
3. Inability to focus
4. Inability to fall asleep.
5. Nightmares on a regular basis
6. Unhealthy eating habits
7. Irritable and prone to rage outbursts.
8. Frequently on the verge of tears
9. Frequent complaints of abdominal colic and stomach upset.


The treatment will include a combination of psychotherapy, behavioral therapy, and medication. Alcoholism, depression, and other conditions can sometimes have such a strong impact on mental health that treating an anxiety disorder must be postponed until any underlying conditions are addressed. Talk to your child more frequently about their problems or fears without mocking or making fun of them. Inquire about any problems at school, such as teacher or other staff fear, or bullying by other students.

Get plenty of physical activity, pre-teen or adolescent sleep, and eat and drink healthily, avoid caffeine, alcohol, and other drugs, avoid unnecessary stress by not procrastinating or being late and practice breathing, muscle relaxation, or mindfulness exercises.

1. Relaxation techniques – Relaxation techniques can help reduce anxiety and negative thoughts while also assisting in stress management. Deep abdominal breathing, meditation, listening to calming music, and activities like yoga and tai chi are all common relaxation techniques.

2. Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy – Cognitive-behavioral psychotherapy techniques are frequently effective in treating adolescent anxiety disorders. Such approaches assist the adolescent in examining anxiety, anticipating situations where it is likely to occur, and comprehending its effects. This can help a child recognize the exaggerated nature of his or her fears and develop a solution to the problem. Furthermore, cognitive-behavioral therapy is tailored to the teen’s anxiety problem, and the teen actively participates, which usually improves the youngster’s understanding.

3. Other Therapies – In addition to ACT, long-term psychotherapy and family therapy may be recommended in some cases. If you’re dealing with anxiety, remember that with the right treatment, you can have a bright future ahead of you. Anxiety does not have to take over your life. The sooner a problem is identified, the simpler it is to treat.