Therapist Explains What Children Worry About, With Respect to Their Age

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It is not only the adults that experience worry and fear – as children often do, too. Therapists explained that child concern seems to differ with regard to their age groups or stages of development.

Why do kids worry?

Many parents can attest to it that children actually vary in temperament. We have some babies that are more relaxed, while others are more anxious; some of them are criers, some aren’t and so on. It becomes an issue when anxiety interferes with a child’s cognitive, emotional, or social development – it could be a difficult thing to detect this behavior but in case you notice any subtle clues, kindly seek the expertise of a psychologist or medical doctor.

Now, have you ever wondered why children worry too? It is the simplest time of life, isn’t it? It is all brain-related, folks.

Without mincing words, children are anxious because of the pace at which their brain develops. By that time, the child is absorbing – and trying to interpret – a vast amount of external stimuli (which is the environment of people, places and things). To complicate the case, the ability to cope with anxiety and worry don’t usually develop until after adolescence. It is another reason why a child – even a teenager – may throw a tantrum, because they feel the frustration of not being understood. To crown it all, fear of the unknown is a very natural part of growing up.

What do children worry about?

A child doesn’t start to express thoughts and feelings until they are near age three. In normal circumstances, it isn’t until around the age of 8 that they are able to do so with some coherence. Therefore, it is a natural thing to be curious about what is worrying the kid.

List of Worries (And the Why Behind Them)

Infants and Toddlers (0 to 2years)

–         Being separated from their parents: Until 8 to 10 months, babies have believed that what is temporarily gone just vanishes. For example, when you go out of the room, your sweet child thinks you are, well, gone forever. Then, they wise up to the fact you are somewhere and start to feel the fear of separation. They love you, after all.

–         Loud noises: The kid’s brain is super sensitive to information (and sensory) overload. A loud noise will definitely send their delicate brain into high alert.

–         External ‘Locus of control’: When your little babies start to take their first steps (a fantastic thing), they begin to get the wonderful feeling of independence. They feel an ever-increasing need for control over their environment. Anything that tends to be outside such control can seem frightening to them.

Preschool/Kindergarten (3 to 5years)

–         Fear of the dark/being alone at night: Kindergarten kids have a hard time distinguishing fantasy from reality. Anyways, if a child relates darkness with something scary, they are possibly coming crawling into your room at night.

–         People in costume: Should we say there is a common theme developing, then it is the fact that kids aren’t comfortable with the unfamiliar. When a man dresses in a red costume, bushy white beard, and a weird-looking red hat isn’t actually going to impress them much, rather they might even hate it.

Fast forwarding to 6-11years old

The fear of unknown people, the dark, being alone and other things outside of their control pretty much dominate the child’s worries until age 6 or 7. Then, the kids begin to fear things until around age 11 or 12.

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