With seasons changing, school in full force and the blitz of the holidays on the horizon, November is a stimulating, often frenzied time for families – kids and teens are no exception. This month we’ll be sharing some practical advice and insights to help you work with your young clients suffering from anxiety.
When it comes to mood disorders, anxiety is often the quickest to take root with children and can have severe, threatening implications. It’s likely that you’ve encountered phobia-driven anxieties which can manifest in younger children as tantrums or outbursts. Working with teens can provide fertile opportunities to investigate phobias, exposure-related anxiety and sweeping worries about various areas of their lives. When generalized anxiety sets in and teenage clients exhibit extreme worry about various types of issues in their lives, how can practitioners determine the best way to understand the root cause?
While investigating the root causes underlying anxious or nervous behavior, creating an environment where patients feel safe and emotionally secure is essential. Explore ways to create consistency with young clients by asking them what they remember about prior sessions, by starting with a recognizable set of questions or activities each time you meet, or by making the environment feel comfortable and easy to be in. Get to know how anxiety manifests in your clients – whether through physical symptoms like shortness of breath, trembling or sweatiness, or through persistent areas of worry. Whether your clients are children or on the brink of adulthood, minimizing the long-term psychiatric disturbances associated with anxiety is essential.
We’ve put together a helpful list of articles and publications to help you stay informed on the latest literature and understanding of generalized anxiety.
Assessment and Treatment of Anxiety Disorders in Children and Adolescents – NCBI
Management of Anxiety Disorders in Adolescents – BMJ
Anxiety Disorders in Children and Adolescents: Need for Early Detection – JPGM
Adolescent Anxiety: Aetiology, Diagnosis and Treatment - Cambridge
If you feel that your young clients need a more comprehensive approach, the START program at Casa Pacific is a great place to, well, start!
Casa Pacifica’s Short-Term Adolescent Residential Treatment (START) program is designed for youth ages 9 through 17 years old and specifically addresses a wide range of mental health issues.
Contact us, or call now at (805) 366-4000.