Childhood Anxiety

Just like adults, children and young people feel anxious and worried at times of stress. Normal anxiety is the body’s way of dealing with stressful situations or events and is also known as the body’s “fight or flight” response. It is normal for children to have some anxiety as they grow and develop; for example, separation anxiety is a common form of anxiety that occurs from the age of around eight months to three years. Many young children also develop worries and fears about the dark, animals, spiders, water or heights, and these usually go away on their own as the child gets older.

Children may feel anxious about a number of things, such as exams, schoolwork or in social situations. Anxiety becomes a problem for children when it starts to interfere with their day-to-day lives and makes the child feel overwhelmed by their worries. If the problem has gone but the anxious feelings are still there or have got worse, then this may be something to follow up with an E&A psychologist about. Many adults who have anxiety disorders had their first symptoms when they were a child. Research shows some children who have untreated anxiety may also struggle with other emotional problems such as depression, so it is important to get help as soon as possible.

If you or your child find it hard to manage anxiety, call E&A today on (07) 5479 3538 (Maroochydore) or (07) 5438 9177 (Caloundra) to speak to one of our friendly support team members and book an appointment with an experienced psychologists who can help you or your child with these difficult feelings.

The symptoms of anxiety in children can vary from child to child but often start out as feelings of worrying that gets worse or lasts longer than it should do.

Symptoms of anxiety may include:

  • Feeling nervous or panicky all the time
  • Difficulty sleeping
  • Unable to concentrate
  • Tired/ easily fatigued
  • Irritable
  • Heart racing or irregular heartbeat (palpitations)
  • Stomach cramps, diarrhoea or nausea
  • Dry mouth
  • Dizziness or feeling faint
  • Avoidance behaviours of anxiety provoking events 

Your younger child might also begin wetting the bed, having nightmares or become clingy. In older children other symptoms might be avoiding certain situations, including school or seeing friends, lacking confidence or have angry outbursts. 

As many as one in six children and young people experience anxiety at some point in their lives. Some children are more likely to get anxious than others. Some possible triggers of anxiety in children may be a big event such as moving house, changing school, experiencing a distressing or traumatic event, such as a car crash or death in the family or family arguments and conflict.

There are several different types of anxiety in children, which have slightly different symptoms and behaviours. Many of these disorders share the same distressing physical and emotional symptoms. Some of the common types of anxiety disorder are:

  • Generalised Anxiety Disorder (GAD)
  • Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD)
  • Phobias (social phobia, or specific phobias like fear of dogs)
  • Selective Mutism
  • Panic Disorder
  • Separation Anxiety Disorder
  • Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD)

Here at E&A psychology, our highly trained and skilled psychologists are experienced in working with children and their families to resolve these difficult emotional disorders. We can help to give your child the tools they need to work through their anxiety and develop into a confident young adult. We take a holistic approach in working with children and teenagers and ensure a personalised treatment that takes into consideration your child’s individual needs and preferences. If you are concerned about your child, we can help. Call us today on (07) 5479 3538 (Maroochydore) or (07) 54389177 (Caloundra) or use our online booking form to make an appointment today and start working together with us to ensure your special young person has the best start to life! 


At E&A, we are a group of compassionate psychologists who genuinely want to help you create change. Our two convenient locations are central Maroochydore and the Caloundra health precinct. Our aim is to see you find your best life, great relationships and goals that excite you. 

Contact Us

Maroochydore: 1A/68 Kingsford Smith Parade, Maroochydore 4558
Caloundra: 13 Mayes Ave, Caloundra, QLD, 4551
Birtinya: 201/67 Regatta Boulevard, Birtinya, 4575

Tel: Maroochydore: 07 5479 3538 Caloundra: 07 5438 9177 Birtinya: 07 5357 9108
Fax: Maroochydore: 07 5636 0967 Caloundra: 07 5636 0984