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All of us experience a certain amount of anxiety at times in our lives. For children, these anxieties and fears are often associated with developmental stages. Infants fear loud noises or falling. Very young children fear strangers or being apart from caregivers. Preschoolers often deal with separation anxiety and fears about animals, monsters or the dark.
Whether we like it or not, standardized testing is a reality that children are forced to deal with. Schools practice test-taking strategies all year long to prepare for that looming date of state assessments. The focus of learning has shifted from teaching children solely coursework, to teaching kids coursework as well as tricks and techniques for bumping test scores up as high as possible. But when all that preparation is said and done, test time arrives and students are still left to their own devices. Students with high cognitive abilities but a low ability to deal with anxiety may find themselves doing poorly on standardized tests.
By Mary Anne Knapp, MSW, LCSW College Student Anxieties Social workers in college counseling centers see increasing numbers of students each year for problems ranging from homesickness and test anxiety to eating disorders and suicidal thoughts. While many people think of college as an ideal time of life when young adults are meeting academic challenges, experiencing personal growth and enjoying social activities like football games and parties; college can also be a time of depression and overwhelming anxiety, confusion about identity and dealing with losses and traumas such as parental divorce or date rape.
Anxiety Resources Anxiety Disorders Association of America The Anxiety Disorders Association of America (ADAA) is a nonprofit organization whose mission is to promote the prevention, treatment and cure of anxiety disorders and to improve the lives of all people who suffer from them.” www.adaa.org Freedom from Fear Freedom From Fear is a national not-for-profit mental health advocacy association founded in 1984. The organization’s mission is to impact, in a positive way, the lives of all those affected by anxiety, depressive and related disorders through advocacy, education, research and community support. www.freedomfromfear.org National Institute of Mental Health The National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH) is the lead Federal agency for research on mental and behavioral disorders.
Anxiety is a complex emotion, and its signs and symptoms may be manifested in different ways. Following are brief descriptions of the forms of anxiety that may occur in children and teenagers. Detailed descriptions, signs and symptoms, causes, treatment and related information can be found by linking to each disorder. Separation Anxiety Disorder — Children with separation anxiety disorder (SAD) have intense anxiety about being away from home or caregivers that affects their ability to function socially and in school.