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Child in a State of Anxiety: The Do’s and Don’ts

The last thing you want to do when a child is anxious is make them feel fear. To prevent from this thing happening, building respect is the best solution. Conversely, respecting your child’s feelings is somewhat difficult for a parent. Why? Because most parents have the belief that they are always right and they always know what is the best for everyone. Well, this is not actually true. Experience wise, yes, you are ahead of your children but when we are talking about feelings, experience is not the topmost criterion for that.

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Here are the top ten to do and not to do when your child is experiencing anxiety:

#1. Assist a child to manage anxieties.

Nobody wants to see any child suffer from his or her own worries that make him or her unhappy. However, we need to face reality that anxieties cannot be totally eliminated from anyone’s system; and the preeminent approach we can do is to assist them in learning how to endure and accept their personal anxieties. That they can still function normally and continue with their life even if anxieties are everywhere. We have to teach them how to react in a more positive and motivating manner rather than dwelling on the negative side of such.

#2. Prevent from giving band-aid solutions to anxieties.

In dealing with anxieties, do not let your child avoid such things by getting away or escaping from it because it will only underpin anxieties in a long run. You must let them face their anxieties and since they are just kids, proper guidance should still be present. Do not take control over the situation instead support them and make them feel that you are always there to back them up. However, you have to make certain that giving out help is well-balanced or not too much. You do not want your child be much dependable on you during such times. Giving your child proper advises or options, letting them know that consequences of their actions or giving them encouragement will make a whole lot of difference.

#3. Positive yet realistic expectations are better than false hopes.

Do not promise your child that everything is fine and dandy; that there is no chance of failing an exam, everybody will like him or her, or nobody will laugh at his or her mistake during a showcase. However, you can convey assurance that he or she will be able to manage it; that everybody commits mistakes or everybody has flaws and shortcomings. You need to make a child be open to all possibilities regardless if it is good or bad.

#4. Respect but do not empower a child’s feelings.

It is exceptionally significant to recognize that confirmation does not constantly mean agreement. Therefore, if a child is scared or anxious about getting a vaccination, you do not want to neither ridicule his or her feelings nor intensify them. Listen and sympathize with your child, then encourage him or her that he or she can manage it. The message you would like to relay is, “I know you are afraid but that is alright and I’ll come with you to hold your hand.”

#5. No to leading questions.

Do not ask leading questions when you seem to find a child suffering from anxiety. Because if you do, you will only make it worse instead of opening an opportunity to fix the problem. From the word itself, these questions lead to state of panic and give a completely new set of pressure to a child. Rather than using leading questions, it would be better to raise open-ended questions. Open-ended questions persuade a child to talk more about his or her feelings rather than leading questions.

#6. Prevent from reinforcing or emphasizing a child’s fears.

“Probably this is a thing that you need to be afraid of.” This statement is an example of reinforcing a child’s fear plus saying it in a stern tone or gesture. Such statement does not help the situation either; you do not want to aggravate the fear of a child. So express your thoughts or insights in a more non-threatening or non-sarcastic way.

#7. A compliment makes a difference.

If a child is already struggling at school and he or she is constantly having difficulty to fit in, make it a habit to compliment his or her hard work. You have to let a child knows that the effort he or she is exerting is not a waste. Uplifting a child’s confidence brings encouragement and will to continue to deal with anxiety; and later on will reduce the worries until it reaches a point where a child is not that bothered at all. Home is definitely a child’s comfort zone and you must not take that away from him or her.

#8. Make time; do not make any excuses or alibis.

It is given that in an average household, both parents are busy working and attending to other things as well. However, that is not an excuse for you not to have quality time for your children. If you do not have time, make time. Time management is not an easy job but to start it off, make use of Stephen Covey’s Time Management Matrix. Covey’s time management is divided into 4 quadrants and it is based from urgency versus importance. List down what are the things that are urgent and important, urgent but not important, important but not urgent, and not important and not urgent. Spending time with a child to talk about anything under the sun will not only benefit your child but will also benefit you. You both learn things during conversation and get to know each other better because let us face the truth, not all parents know their children and vice versa.

#9. Practice what you preach.

A reason why most children do not believe advises the parents give is because most of the times these advises are mere advises; parents do not even practice what they say to their children. Therefore, be a good influence or example to your children. I am not saying that you need to pretend you do not have your own personal anxieties or worries but you must show your children how you take them, manage them and feel good facing them.

#10. Prevent from passing your own anxieties to your children.

A rule of thumb and this last point is the most important of them all. You must avoid from passing your personal anxieties to your child. First of all, it is not their fault that you have your personal issues and they should not take the blame of it. However, it is not also a bad idea to share your anxieties with your child; maybe in this case, it will open a door for your child to relay his or her own worries as well. With this, you can work and get through things together.

There is nothing wrong in protecting a child from any type of anxiety but it is wrong to take full control over a child’s anxiety from him or her. You are there to support and encourage but let them handle anxiety on their own.

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Top Five Causes of Anxiety in Children

“Prevention is better than cure.”

This saying is always on top of everyone’s head whenever the topic of discussion is about wellness. However, you have to admit it that at some cases, you tend to neglect it, particularly when it comes to the psychological aspect of your health. Few tantrums, a change in eating habits or hot flashes are just normal and would not cause your mental health at risk. On the other hand, such episodes can pile up and can form into a mental disorder, which then affect not only one’s life but also the life of everybody. This does not only apply to adults, it actually starts in our early years.

As parents, you only want the best for your children; providing them the best schools, best foods – best things that life can actually offer. However, you should acknowledge that every day is not always a happy day. There are occasions where you lash out your own frustrations and stresses to your children that can be a reason of confusion, fear or anxiety to them. There are also other factors cause anxiety to a child and here are some:

 

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Peer Pressure. Your responsibility as parents is to provide for your children and in return, you expect them to do well at school or in any activity, they participate. It brings joy and honor to your name what recognition your children get. However, when a child starts to falter or is not doing well in his or her endeavors, you have the propensity to show your disappointment, even without taking consideration as to why your child is not performing well. There have to be reasons but instead of asking why, you sometimes force or order your child to exert more effort. Some cases, you pass your failed dreams over to them without taking into account if they want it as well or not.

Lack of Communication. Due to your hectic schedule between your job and personal errands, you are too tired to communicate with your children. Instead of allotting time to ask how their day was, you will skip dinner and just sleep. Not taking time to sit and talk with your child creates distance between the both of you. Always remember that the first learning environment of any child is at home, what a child learns at home is what a child brings out at school or any other place.

Social Acceptance. Parents also have limitations when it comes in honing a child’s strength and endurance especially when a child starts to go to school. Children meet several individuals with different personalities; some are accommodating, some are reserved and others might be not-so friendly. With such diversity, children create different factions; there is the popular group, the math wizards, athletic group and so on (So Hogwartsy? Or mentioning factions made you think of Divergent? Sorry, I had to write it). Going back, if a child wants to fit in a specific group but the group leader is not that accepting, a child will do whatever it takes to be on that group and can stress him or her out. The sole reason why a child wants to be accepted is to get away from embarrassment or humiliation. Primarily because, having a group or being socially accepted is the best way to boost a child’s confidence and protect one’s social status and importance.

Humiliation/Embarrassment and Social Judgment. Being humiliated or embarrassed in front of other people stresses anyone out, even as you age; you find it unacceptable and unfair. A child’s goal is not to be the laughing-stock of a community because it is extremely traumatizing for them. Humiliation or embarrassment makes a child lose his or her confidence and may create social phobia, instead of developing a child’s full potential. Social judgment is another cause of child’s anxiety. Judging a child based from physical appearance, hearsays or personality greatly affects a child’s self-esteem and self-worth, which are fundamental in personal and social developments.

Hereditary. This last key point is also factual as anxiety disorders can be rooted from genes. Bear in mind that anxiety disorders are classified under mental health problems and it is also proven by some experts in the psychological field. I’ll post another blog for treatment on such cases, so stay tune or follow me (nice segue to promote my site isn’t it? :D) .

These are the top five causes of anxiety in children and are regularly happening every day but some of us choose not to focus on. It is never too late to correct our mistakes in neglecting these things. Share your thoughts, I’d love to hear em, Lovelies. Thanks for catching up with our Pinay Time together! 🙂 ❤

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Anxiety in Children

Anxiety is common to everyone, children included. Many experts, even Psychologists, have stated that anxiety is a standard element during our childhood years, and all children go through with different anxiety phases. A single anxiety phase is typically harmless and momentary. Such phase is frequently forgotten and does not traumatize a child. However, once a phase becomes rampant and a child develops fear or nervousness, it becomes an anxiety disorder.

What is Anxiety?

By simple definition, anxiety means unease, fretfulness, concern, and nervousness. It is generally a type of stress. In such type, anxiety can be encountered in several different ways such as emotionally, physically, socially and mentally. It is chiefly related to what could happen or what might be the end result – worrying about something might go wrong or a feeling that you are in danger.

Anxiety is just a normal reaction to humans as it serves a vital function biologically. It is your natural alarm system that is stimulated every time you identify a threat. Whenever your mind and body react, you may feel dizzy, heavily breathing, fast heart rate, and/or your body trembles. These are physical sensations called “fight-flight responses.” These sensations are normally caused by an adrenaline rush and stress hormones, which train your body to create a sudden flight from any threat or danger.

Normal Anxiety

Anxiety is said to be normal because everyone experiences anxiety in everyday’s life. Same goes with children. Taking important exams in school, preparing for a quiz bee or a basketball game, for example. Such encounters will activate normal anxiety because these cause children to focus mostly on the “ifs” or “what if’s” such as What if I fail? What if I won’t get the first place?

Anxiety is stressful; however, some can be motivating especially if parents have the initiative to guide their children on how to deal with anxiety. It can and may help children to stay focus and alert, and exert their effort to do their best. However, when anxiety becomes too overwhelming such as peer pressure, social acceptance or judgment, it can take over the enjoyable and positive part of their lives. When it does, a normal anxiety at first can lead to an anxiety disorder.

Anxiety Disorder

Mental disorders due to anxiety are the most familiar psychological health conditions because as what was mentioned earlier, anxiety is a common reaction to all. There is a long list of different anxiety disorders in children; however, all of these disorders share a common characteristic – affects the entirety of a child.

Here are some of the common anxiety disorders in children:

  • GAD or Generalized Anxiety Disorder. Children with GAD always go all-out for perfection and when something is not going their way, they have the tendency to be hard on themselves.
  • Panic Disorder. Children with Panic Disorder suffer from at least two panic attacks that are unexpected and for no reason at all.
  • Separation Anxiety. Children with Separation Anxiety always take a longer time to calm down and demand someone to stay with them. They always worry about something extremely bad will going to happen, when they are not with their parents or loved ones.
  • Social Anxiety Disorder. It is also called as Social Phobia. Children with Social Anxiety Disorder have the fear of performing in front of an audience or even a small group of people.

 Defining and understanding what separates a normal anxiety from an anxiety disorder is an initial step; however, what really causes an anxiety to children? Are there symptoms that parents could detect? What do parents need to do in order to help their children? Here are just a few questions you may have in mind.

In the next week or so, I’ll be posting articles that will hopefully answer some of these questions. I may not be a parent (yet), however, anxiety in children is not new to me. I have friends who’s child suffer from anxiety disorder. Feel free to drop a comment or anything you’d like to add related to this post. Thanks, Lovelies! For sharing Pinay Time with me. 🙂 ❤

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Essential Oils for Children: Is it safe?

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All parents want the best for their children; sumptuous food, good education and healthy body to experience life to the fullest. The difficult thing parents’ encounter is to make the best decision to attain these goals and keeping their children out of sickness is a priority to them. In deciding what essential oils can be used to their children is not an exemption as well. I’m guessing, we already have an idea what essential oils are. Regardless of the brand or eminence of the essential oil, they are tremendously concentrated mixtures of different chemical components and have the need of awareness in utilizing them. In this blog, we are going to gain knowledge on how to use essential oil with infants and toddlers in a safety manner.

Essential Oils that are Safe for Topical Use on Infants, 3 months of age

Most researches about essential oils inform parents not to utilize essential oils on infants who are less than three months of age. The sole reason is that infant’s skin at this age is immature yet; for that reason, it is more penetrable and susceptible to essential oils. Newborns or infants are not as tolerable as adults in dealing with adverse effects of essential oils. The maximum suggested quantity of essential oils to be used on infants topically is one to two drops for every ounce of carrier oil.

These are the five most recommended essential oils use topically for infants:

  • Roman Chamomile or Anthemis nobilis
  • German Chamomile or Matricaria rectutita
  • Blue Yarrow or Achillea millefolium
  • Dill or Anthum graveolens
  • Lavender or Lavendula angustifolia

 

Essential Oils that are Safe for Topical Use on Infants, 6 months of age

The maximum suggested quantity of essential oils to be used on infants six months of age is three to five drops for every ounce of carrier oil. Here are some of the essential oils that can be used:

  • Bergamot or Citrus bergamia
  • Carrot Seed or Daucus carota
  • Cinnamon Leaf or Cinnamomum verum
  • Atlas Cedarwood or Cedrus atlantica
  • Virgina Cedarwood or Juniperus virginiana
  • Cedarwood or Cedrus deodora
  • Coriander or Coriandrum sativum
  • Fir Needle or Abies sibirica
  • Citronella or Cymbopogon nardus
  • Mandarin or Citrus reticulate
  • Geranium or Pelargonium graveolens
  • Helichrysum or Helichrysum angustifolium
  • Neroli or Citrus Aurantium
  • Grapefruit or Citrus paradise
  • Ravensara or Raensara aromatic
  • Palma Rosa or Cymbopogon martini
  • Sandalwood or Santalum spicatum
  • Tea Tree or Melaleuca alternifolia
  • Rose Otto or Rosa damascena
  • Sweet Orange or Citrus sinensis

 

Essential Oils that are Safe for Topical Use  on Children, 2 years of age

The maximum suggested quantity of essential oils to be used on children two years of age is twenty drops for every ounce of carrier oil. Check the list of essential oils below:

  • Basil, Lemon or Ociumum x citriodorum
  • Basil, Sweet or Ocimum basilicum
  • Black Pepper or Piper nigrum
  • Cassia or Cinnamomum cassia
  • Clary Sage or Salvia sclareao
  • Copaiba Basalm or Copaifera officinalis
  • Frankincense or Boswellia carterii
  • Garlic or Allium sativum
  • Ginger or Zingiber officinale
  • Hyssop or Hyssopus officinalis
  • Juniper Berry or Juniperus communis
  • Melissa or Lemon Balm or Melissa officinalis
  • Myrrh or Commiphora myrrha
  • Sweet Marjoram or Marjorana hortensis
  • Patchouli or Pogostemon cablin
  • Tumeric or Cucuma longa
  • Vetiver or Vetiveria zizanoides
  • Valarian or Valeriana officinalis
  • Ylang Ylang or Cananga odorata

 

 Essential Oils that are Safe for Topical Use on Children, 6 years of age

The maximum suggested quantity of essential oils to be used on children six years of age is thirty drops for every ounce of carrier oil. Here are some of the essential oils that can be used:

  • Anise/Aniseed or Pimpinella anisum
  • Anise, Star or Illicium verum
  • Cardamom or Elettaria cardamomum
  • Fennel, sweet and bitter or Foeniculum vulgare
  • Spanish Marjoram or Thymus mastichina
  • Niaouli or Cineole chemotype
  • Nutmeg or Myristica fragrans
  • Peppermint or Mentha x piperita

 

Essential Oils that are Safe for Topical Use on Children, 10 years of age

From this age, almost all of the essential oils can be administered safely to your toddlers. However, peppermint, rosemary and all different types of eucalyptus are still not advisable to be used in children as these essential oils consist of Menthol and Cineol. Menthol and Cineol invigorates cold-receptor in a toddler’s lungs, thus, activate s a reaction in toddlers that stalls breathing radically.

 

Things to remember in using essential oils to your children:

  • Do your research. There are a lot of blogs online and even books which can help you understand the usage of essential oils to your kids. It could be tedious to do all the research and reading however your kids’ security and safety is at stake.
  • Seek professional help. If you have done your own study about essential oils and still in doubt if it is alright to use it. You can ask for assistance from different professional aroma therapist or doctors. Always weigh your options.
  • Use the correct dosage and/ or dilution. It is very important to always check on the proper dosage before using it to your children. Even an excess drop of essential oil can have unwanted effects to your kids. Make sure to follow the exact procedure in administering an essential oil.
  • Introduce one essential at a time. Infants and toddlers have more sensitive and delicate skin than adults, so make sure to use one essential oil at a time. Do NOT use 2 or more of these oils in a day as a skin reaction can take place within 15-30 minutes from the time you have used it to your babies.
  • Oral Usage is a No No. Ingestion of essential oils to children is ALWAYS prohibited. There are severe and critical effects that may damage your kid’s internal organs.
  • Do NOT forget about the Latin Name. In searching for the proper essential oil to be used for your kids. Do NOT omit the Latin name of the oil as not to confuse yourself with the other essential oils. For example, Lavender has different types and not all are recommended to be used for children.

 

These are only basic guidelines that can assist you if you want to join the trend of essential oil practice. Parents, be smart and safe enough. I’d love to hear your suggestion and opinion about using Essential Oils to your children, so please drop a comment below and lets discuss our points. Thank you, Lovelies for joining Pinay Time with yours truly — The Drunken Cheeks 🙂 ❤