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Dr Ellie’s Tips for Supporting a Child with Anxious Feelings

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What are some of the signs your child may be struggling?

1. They may be preoccupied with one thought or idea like something that scares them or a bully at school
2. Being very sensitive to noises, sights and frights
3. They can withdraw from activities with friends and family
4. Their appetite may change
5. They may develop sleep issues

How does stress/anxiety affect a child?

1. Feeling overwhelmed or out of control
2. Having wobbly legs or an upset tummy
3. Feeling sick
4. Feeling too worried to concentrate or sleep
5. Feeling tense or hot

How to help your child manage?

1. Try things you know help them relax such as baking, drawing or exercising
2. When they are calm, ask them what worries them and acknowledge it
3. Consider making a self-soothe plan: a plan of what you will both do when anxiety strikes such as a box with all their go-to comforts
4. Make exercise and sleep a priority: both reduce anxiety levels
5. Give them space to talk sideways: being in the car or washing up are great opportunities to talk when you are not face to face. This can be easier for your child.

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