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  1. #1
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    Default Anxiety in children

    Hi all, our dd has recently been diagnosed with aspergers and suffers anxiety, which can be extreme at times. It's all pretty new to us, so am just wondering if people have tips? She has particular things that make her anxious, and we are torn as to avoiding them or pushing her to do them, plus she sometimes gets hysterical about things she has been fine with before. Starting school this year has made it all much harder too.
    Anything you have learnt or read etc would be helpful thanks

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    My eldest is 9 this year and he has autism, ADHD, ODD (oppositional defiance disorder) anxiety and is 'globally' delayed (generally behind his age group in all mental things to a degree that's not ignorable) All his other issues help feed his anxiety e.g. if he gets stressed out over something it triggers his ADHD and he gets crazy angry. So it's still something we're working on even years after diagnosis. The number one thing to remember with Ty is NEVER FORCE HIM! He has a huge fear of failure, embarrassing situations and of not being able to do it the same if not better than the best (this is definitely not something we instilled in him) so things that are competitive like sports, board games, even colouring comps usually incite a "I'm not doing that" response or he will have a go but if he loses or doesn't come first he freaks out and goes nuts or introverts. He can't even play in the playground at school as his anxiety makes him paranoid and he thinks kids are staring at him (generally they aren't) or if he trips over he blames it on the kid nearest and although he's much better these days at controlling himself physically he used to smack em one! Or 5......
    Ty has been in an IO class since year 1. I can't remember what io stands for but it's what we used to call special ed when we were at school. Usually a school that has a special ed class for kids with severe disabilities has an io class which is more intellectual disabilities. The classes are smaller, tailored to each child, free from pressure and for us they have been a miracle. Ty is more relaxed, able to concentrate and is slowly.catching up although he will more than likely never leave the io environment because of his anxiety. It's not in his best interests.
    At home we took the time to notice what his outlet was and its his PlayStation. He can submerge himself in fictional problems that take his.mind off his own iykwim. It's his life line. Kids with anxiety, autism, ADHD and aspergs usually have an affinity for technology and video games. When tys had a crap day he chills out on the PlayStation and I'm thankful we have that for him.
    Also seeing other kids do things encourages him to have a go. If he doesn't want to participate in something we tell him that's ok but we're still going to do it. Often after a few minutes of sitting out watching he'll cautiously join in.
    And get on the dramatic praise wagon ASAP. There's praise and then there's praise for.kids with anxiety. Go over the top in how you tell them your proud of them when they do something. Any little thing that's not a negative go nuts and praise like they just won principles award of the year! And if there's an 'incident' don't ever lose you cool in front of them or where they can hear. Talk calmly when you can and say it's ok, maybe we will make better choices next time and that's another thing. Start integrating choices. How they have a choice to join in or A choice not to. A choice to get mad and say bad words or a choice to tell someone that they feel sad and take some time out to calm down etc everything they do is their choice and as kids with anxiety they need to know that they have a choice in everything (more or less) talk about good choices and bad choices is something Ty has been hearing since he was about 4-5 and its a key part of how he manages his day. Reward charts are also excellent once you start seeing some positive choices. Ours is one that has no time limit, he get a spot for a good choice or just general good behavior. Once he's at 10 spots he gets a pick out of the treasure bag (bag I've filled with toys and things from the cheapo shop) and its a good focus mechanism for him. His school has even implemented our idea it for the whole class!

    I hope this helped some

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    Thanks pp, anyone else?


 

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