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help for DD (8yo) with severe anxiety - what works?

(5 Posts)
runningLou Fri 25-Mar-16 07:08:07

DD has been suffering with toxic friendships at school and has become very volatile and distressed at home. Combination of anxiety and not being able to deal with emotions such as anger caused by events at school. We have seen a chid therapist who initially suspected HF Aspergers due to DD's lack of empathy and inability to follow instructions at home, but now says it is not Aspergers but severe anxiety. What is the best way to help a child with this? Counselling? I feel awful as have GAD myself so feel like I have passed on my shitty way of coping with the world

Clonakiltylil Fri 25-Mar-16 11:23:14

Hello. If you repost in 'Child Mental Health' you might get some help and advice from parents who have had similar experiences. All the best.

NanaNina Fri 25-Mar-16 14:37:12

Your DD is too young for counselling. You could ask the GP for a referral to CAMHS (child & adolescent mental health service) but there's usually a waiting list and it depends who you get. The best therapy for an 8 year old is play therapy but you are unlikely to get it on the NHS. Don't know if you can afford to pay (around £50 an hour I think)

Rhumba Fri 25-Mar-16 14:45:42

Would agree with play therapy if an option. other is looking at stress and relaxation exercises and trying to help her identify when she is anxious and what triggers are and how our body reacts to it (also known as fight or flight response) if she's into her ipad or anything it may be helpful to see if there are any apps (I think someone I know was using "head space" which comes as free trial) Mindfulness can be helpful too.

rattata Thu 31-Mar-16 17:52:54

Your poor DD what a horrid situation. Since the Toxic friendships are the root cause of the anxiety perhaps you could try dealing with them. What has the school/her teacher suggested ? Most schools now have a visiting counsellor who children can see, SEAL and friendships groups, mentoring from older pupils - befriender in the playground schemes and have discretion to allow children to avoid playground problems by coming straight into the classroom on morning arrival, going to the library in other breaks or matching your child with seating etc with a different group within the class to redraw friendship groups .

Some children facing these sort of issues move class within the school and some move school to have a fresh start. Another option is to try home education for a while to allow your DD to destress and just play and be herself again.

You often need to push the school to service you and your child. Think carefully about what you would like them to offer you and don't be put off by a speil about how they are following their anti - bullying policies etc. so that they respond very slowly to your DD's needs..

Be patient, calm and loving at home (try and disguise your own anxiety about the situation). even do a bit of babying or have some lovely trips out and quality time in (watching her favourite film with her snuggled on the sofa etc) to make her feel special and at home. Show her you are doing somethitng to deal with the friendship issues. Praise every little good thing she does . Good luck x

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