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13 year old dd suffering from anxiety - not sleeping, ofter tearful etc

(11 Posts)
hmcAsWas Mon 25-Jan-16 15:32:35

She is disproportionately anxious about all sorts of things (social stuff and school stuff). The rational part of her knows that she is getting things out of proportion but she can't control her worry and distress.

Are there any self help books etc which would give her some help (with my support) in finding strategies to minimise her anxiety?

I am sorry if that is an ignorant questions - I don't know a great deal about anxiety

Ludways Mon 25-Jan-16 15:39:33

My DS went through a similar thing when he was 12/13, he was ok during the day but so stressed out and anxious at night that he started showing OCD tendencies with routines, he had to touch things a certain amount of times, he had to follow the same bizarre procedures with teeth brushing and face washing etc.

He got some help from CAMH's and we changed quite a lot around his bedtimes and routines etc. He's 14 now and although he doesn't sleep much, he's much calmer and he can relax at least, rather than sleep. If she keeps following the same routines, changes won't change. We found allowing him to stay up later and letting him decide when to turn out his light, worked better.

Ludways Mon 25-Jan-16 15:41:24

Sorry, hit post.

I have no self help books, but he has books around positive thinking, which we got from CAMHs, maybe search on Amazon?

hmcAsWas Mon 25-Jan-16 15:50:19

Thanks for sharing your experience with your ds Ludways - I am glad for you that things have improved for him.

I guess that to get her a CAMHs referral my first port of call would be the GP?

TotalConfucius Mon 25-Jan-16 16:04:54

DD went through this at 12/13. (I feel it was a bit more than normal teenage anxiety but it was also added to by 2 of her friends being diagnosed with social anxiety plus lots of discussion/attention given to it. BUT I just didn't know for sure.)
Firstly, I set a deadline - I said ok I think this is something you can work on yourself and with me but if you still feel like this in September we will go to the GP.
The 'Think Good-Feel Good' resources by Paul Stannard are very useful tools. We had a book called 'what to do when you feel anxious' or something similar too. I never pushed the books on her, just left them available. They were moving around the house so she was reading them!
One of her particular worries was interacting with strange adults so we did some work ourselves, going into shops asking questions, ordering coffee in Starbucks(!), asking directions. We also worked on how to extricate yourself from a situation (sometimes it's ok to lie and say you're meeting your mum in 5 minutes etc).
By last September she was very much down to normal teenage anxiety (spots, clothes, boys) and continues to be fine.
But it's very important that she is taken seriously, and believes you will help. If her anxiety escalates at all and there is the slightest chance of self harming, then ignore everything and get to the GP pronto.

TotalConfucius Mon 25-Jan-16 16:06:20

Sorry 's STALLARD not Stannard!

hmcAsWas Mon 25-Jan-16 16:57:49

Thank you TotalConfucius - I agree that I should escalate quickly if the situation degenerates. She has agreed to talk to me openly on a daily basis on a one to one regarding what is currently bothering her so that we can work through her list of stresses. I will look at the Paul Stallard resources

hmcAsWas Mon 25-Jan-16 16:57:53

Thank you TotalConfucius - I agree that I should escalate quickly if the situation degenerates. She has agreed to talk to me openly on a daily basis on a one to one regarding what is currently bothering her so that we can work through her list of stresses. I will look at the Paul Stannard resources

Ludways Mon 25-Jan-16 16:58:22

I agree with total, she needs to be taken seriously. I started to tell DS his worries were silly, not in a dismissive way but to try and ease the worry. It didn't help, once I started to address the issues and start to solve them, no matter how small, things started to improve.

First port of call, if you decide to go down the CAMHs route, is your GP.

schmalex Mon 25-Jan-16 17:10:19

I was recently suffering from anxiety and have recovered well. I find exercise and meditation helps - the headspace app is very good if you have an iPhone. I agree that going to the GP is probably best though.

hmcAsWas Tue 26-Jan-16 08:25:21

Am on the GPs triage list for a call back today for an urgent appointment. She just isn't coping and constantly breaking down in tears sad

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