View Full Version : Anxiety disorder in a child - Help/Advice?
04-13-2007, 08:48 AM
Hi! I wasn't sure which board to post this on, disabilities, Families, or even Comminity so I hope I chose the correct one. ;)
My 7 year old DD (younger DD, in 1st grade) has had many health issues in her young life. Gagging on certain food textures, born with one kidney, reflux (urinary), reflux surgery, got E-Coli at age 2, speech delay and sensory issues etc....
She, thankfully, with speech therapy and a great pre-school, has outgrown most of her delays and sensory issues.
Now, the last thing that is currently affecting her ability to function in school is anxiety. The teacher brought it to my attention in her parent-teacher conference this year and the school counselor called me yesterday to tell me its gotten worse, not better (she was able to witness an example first-hand yesterday) and that maybe she should see her PCP and seek counseling. She can't diagnose her but thinks it might be an anxiety disorder. We do know that she has problems with decisions/choices but we didn't realize the magnitude of it.
My DD has a hard time with decisions/choices and gets overwhelmed sometimes by them. It can make her cry and shut down completely. Once this happens there is no consoling her and it can take a long time to get her out of it. We have been dealing with it at home but didn't realize how much it was affecting her in school.
I feel horrible. I want to do what's best for her and not have this affect her in school. I called to tell my DH and his reaction was that she'll grown out of it and that their making a big deal of it and there is NO way he wants her on any medication.
I just called our PCP today and made an appointment for next week. I guess I just wanted to vent a little and see if anyone else has someone in their family like this? Is there hope that relaxation techniques will help? Could she eventually learn to cope and/or maybe grow out of this?
Thanks for any help/input. :)
MY ds12, has clinical level anxiety (was diagnosed several years ago) and we just now had to start medicating him. With all his other issues, it is very hard for the doctors to tell if the cognitive delays are the root of the problem or if it is ADD or anxiety, stress, etc so he has been in "therapy" since August, but his problems have gotten worse over the last year to the point of being debilitating. The doctor put him on 5mg of lexapro 2 weeks ago so we will see how it goes. It has gotten to the point where I really consider not taking him on vacations with the rest of the family because he stresses, freaks out, whatever you want to call it over everything because he has not control (anxiety issue). Don't worry, that's what they make medications for. If your DD is at a point in her life where a small dose of medication will make her world a thousand percent better wouldn't it be worth it? I know my answer was yes. There are alot of things I can not control about my ds's daily life but this is one we can try to help with. Good luck!
04-13-2007, 01:57 PM
Don't let this go, as we found out it can spiral out of control since we took the wait and see approach. The earlier you address it the better, you have no idea if she will out grow it. My DS got worse and worse...then the anxiety led to physical panic attacks. We lived one year (he and I) virtual hermits because it got so bad he couldn't leave the house. He became depressed and retreated to his own world. School became half days, and that was when he could make it out of the house. Life for our family was severely altered. He has lots of other problems and this was the icing on the cake. He has come a long way the last couple years, but it is an ongoing work effort on all of our parts.
We worked closely with a behavioral clinic, and a pyschiatrist for a year and half. They did have to medicate him for depression and after 1.5 years I was able to take him off those medications. Worked so close with our teachers and staff aka angels to do all we could to help him. Great creative ideas from the systems sensory behavioral specialists. Giving him a quiet place he could retreat to to relax, sensory items like squish balls that eventually just sat on his desk - in case, ear plugs to block out others, music with headphones, weighted blanket item he could place on lap when he felt like he was going to burst......and he no longers uses most of these, just ear plugs and ipod. Very much made him a part of solution, giving choices, allowing decisions, acknowledging his anxiety was real and valid. We did find that putting his choices onto cards made it easier for him. He could select the necessary card without speaking, explaining, etc. Made it easier for him to make a choice.
None of this to scare you, my DS mentally functions very low with minimal speech to express anything, so discussions or counseling can't help him. My point is that I would not wait to see if she outgrows. She made need minimal intervention right now to get right back on track but if you wait she made need so much more. Having been there, I wish I had started intervening sooner. As I said we were able to take him off the one medicine, and now just carry the xanax for emergencies or when we are taking him into a situation we know will be difficult for him to handle.
:grouphug: :grouphug: Be pro-active since it's early.
04-13-2007, 02:16 PM
Oh, I will definitely be pro-active and not just wait and see. I was also pro-active with her speech delay and caught that very early on which was great because she talks up a storm now.
Like I said, I've already made an appointment with our PCP for next week and we'll go from there.
04-13-2007, 03:06 PM
My DS12 never slept through the night consistently. At age 8 we began to consult his PCP concerning his anxiety, especially at night. He would literally cling to us and not let us leave his room. He would obsess about the weather, rain, snow, tornadoes, etc, to the point of staring out the window at school to watch the clouds. Fire drills put him out of commission for the day. You get the idea. Anyway, all that to say this...do not be put off about anti-anxiety meds. My son now sleeps through the night consistently! He still has anxiety about some things, but is able to cope and manage his fears for the most part. Medication was a lifesaver. Be smart and listen to a doctor your trust. I wish you the best!
04-14-2007, 01:05 PM
My 15 almost 16 year old has both severe social anxiety and normal anxiety (anxious about every day things). We just put him on Clomipramine which is also for OCD and depression.
He is on several other drugs due to bi-polar, depression, the OCD and anxiety (nothing up to this point helped the OCD and anxiety). This drug is suppose to help. I am really hoping it works for him.
The past 2 weeks his anxiety (it has always been high, the past 2+ weeks I have no idea what triggered it getting worse) has shot through the roof. He paces back and fourth constantly. He can't sit still for more then a few minutes. He hovers which drives me insane. He has to have someone around him 24/7 (almost) and will wake me up even if he has friends over.
He has been on Clomipramine for 5 days and we've seen some minor improvement. We shouldn't see real improvement for another week or so. He is only on 25mg right now but can go up to 200+mg over time if needed. It looks like 100-150 might be a thereputic range. But if 25mg does it I will be thrilled.
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