Medical information

Anxiety disorders

Anxiety disorders are the most common type of mental health disorder in children, affecting as many as 10% of young people.

Symptoms of anxiety disorders

  • These fall into two groups: physical symptoms like headaches or feeling sick; and emotional symptoms like nervousness and fear.
  • Anxiety disorders, when severe, can affect a child's thinking, decision-making ability, perception of the environment and learning and concentration.
  • It raises blood pressure and heart rate and can cause vomiting, stomach pain, ulcers, diarrhoea, tingling, weakness and shortness of breath.

Causes of anxiety disorders

  • There are many factors that contribute to the development of anxiety disorders in children.
  • These may include genetic predisposition, psychological factors and environmental factors.

Treatment for anxiety disorders

  • Treatment for anxiety disorders may include some form of psychotherapy, behavioural therapy or medications.

Psychiatrist Lynne Drummond talks about the symptoms of anxiety disorder and the types of treatment that are known to be effective.