Anxiety Fact Sheet
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​Anxiety Fact Sheet

Anxiety disorders are the most common type of mental health disorder in childhood, affecting approximately 8% of all children and adolescents. There are many types of anxiety disorders that affect youth, the most common being Generalized Anxiety Disorder, Panic Disorder, Separation Anxiety Disorder, and Phobic Disorders.

Symptoms of anxiety disorders can include:

  • ​Recurring fears and worries abo​ut routine parts of every day life
  • ​Physical complaints, like stomachache or headache
  • ​Trouble concentrating
  • ​Trouble sleeping
  • ​Fear of social situations
  • Fear of leaving home
  • ​Fear of separation from a loved one
  • Refusing to go to school
Co-morbid disorders, in particular ADHD and depression, are not uncommon.
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A good diagnostic evaluation will include a complete history of symptoms to determine their severity and how long they have been present. Clinicians should assess for anxiety symptoms based on diagnostic criteria established in the DSM IV or ICD 10 and should use standardized anxiety tools to aid in the assessment.

Anxiety disorders are treatable! Studies have shown that cognitive behavioral therapies (CBT) and medication treatments are both effective in treating anxiety disorders in youth. Parent involvement in treatment has also been shown to improve outcomes in some children. Early treatment can prevent future difficulties, such as academic or social difficulties and low self-esteem. Additional treatment options can be found here.


  • Review treatment options with the child and his/her family.
  • Include the child and his/her family in the treatment plan.
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