Youth Alternatives: What not to do for anxious kids

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CHEYENNE, Wyo - Anxiety is a big problem for people of all ages but especially kids and teens. While we may not have a magic wand to fix everything, parents play an important role in helping kids deal with anxiety.

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-Don’t dismiss their feelings
Don’t write off their feelings as unjustified or unnecessary. This can make them think there is something wrong with them. Instead, be there to support them through the experience.

-Don’t avoid
Because we can’t take the anxiety away, we have to help them learn to deal with it on their own. Give them opportunities to practice handling things on their own and then gradually increase these to show them that they are capable of dealing with problems.

-Don’t think of anxiety as negative
If we think of anxiety as bad so will our kids. This can leave them feeling guilty or ashamed for feeling this way. Remind them that worry is something we all have to deal with but that there are ways to get through.