Episode 20 – Shyness & Selective Mutism

In previous episodes, we talked about behavioural issues common among children. One of the most persistent and challenging of these behavioural issues is anxiety. Anxiety is a natural response of the nervous system to perceived threats; however, it can severely affect the body and mind’s ability to function if it becomes a disorder. Anxiety can be a huge obstacle to your child’s development, so we talk about what it is and how we can help our children cope with it in today’s episode.

To talk about anxiety, we bring in Dr. Elizabeth Woodcock. Dr. Woodcock is a clinical psychologist who provides treatment for children and adults in her general private psychology practice. She the director of the Selective Mutism Clinic in St. Leonard, Sydney, Australia. Dr. Woodcock completed her training at the University of New South Wales, after which she worked with children with severe psychiatric conditions at Westmead Hospital, among her other professional experiences. Aside from her clinical practice, Dr. Woodcock provides regular training seminars for parents and schools and supervision for professionals. In her 15 years of experience, she has seen and managed an extensive number of children, including those experiencing anxiety, making her a credible resource for this episode’s topic.

Key Learnings

The criteria of anxiety disorder in children
Factors that affect the rise of diagnosis of anxiety disorders in children
The common causes of anxiety disorders in children
How anxiety disorders go across the lifespan
How anxiety looks like in a child
The different kinds and categories of anxiety disorders
What parents should do first when they notice signs of anxiety in their children
Why the meaning we attach to a diagnosis is more important than the diagnosis itself
Signs of anxiety that parents should be aware of, particularly on schoolchildren
Addressing anxiety issues in toddlers
How a child can still live a fulfilled life despite an early diagnosis of anxiety

Dr. Elizabeth’s Tip for Parents With Children Struggling With Anxiety

“I think, in general, parents should just be talking openly about all emotions and anxiety, so children are then learning that this is a normal thing to talk about.”

Quotes

“I think it’s helpful to get treatment even if a child doesn’t meet the criteria for an actual diagnosis.”

“It’s easier to treat the younger the child. So, getting in early and giving some strategies early on can really help.”

Links

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PODCAST DISCLAIMER

Any information and links presented within the Chatabout Children™ with Sonia Bestulic podcast are aimed to provide general information and advice only.
Information is to be used at the discretion of the consumer/ listener. The information presented does not replace or substitute the expert advice received from a direct consultation with the relevant qualified professional.

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Bestselling Book: FLOURISH FOR MUMS by Sonia Bestulic