Low-cost Help for Child Anxiety
Program Includes Separation Anxiety, Chronic Anxiety/Worry, Social Anxiety, Panic Attacks and/or Obsessions/Compulsions
Teaneck, NJ (September 18, 2007) ó If the common signs of separation anxiety, chronic anxiety/worry, social anxiety, panic attacks, or obsessions / compulsions (OCD) are exhibited by youngsters in your household or youíre aware of a child or adolescent that is experiencing any of these problems, low-cost coping skills programs are available at Fairleigh Dickinson University. Registration is open from September 20-October 31.
The coping skills programs are low-cost (sliding scale) and consist of about 10 individualized child and/or parent sessions. Each program emphasizes the teaching of specific coping skills to help manage a child or adolescentís anxiety. In order to qualify for the program, the child must be six to sixteen years of age.
Andrew R. Eisen, Ph.D., Associate Professor and the Director of FDUís Child Anxiety Disorders Clinic, will supervise the treatment programs led by advanced doctoral students in FDUís clinical psychology program. A $15 evaluation fee, part of ongoing research, is required to help ensure that participants satisfy treatment program criteria.
The most common signs of separation anxiety include a fear of being alone during the day or night; worries about bad things happening to a parent (e.g., a car accident) or self (e.g., being kidnapped); refusing to let parents go out at night; afraid of being separated from a parent to go to school, a friendís house, or a social activity (e.g., birthday party); nightmares involving themes of separation, refusal to sleep alone; or headaches and/or stomachaches when leaving parents.
The most common signs of chronic anxiety/worry include somatic complaints, muscle tension, an inability to relax, stomachaches, headaches and/or frequent worries related to school, family, friends, health, and worldly concerns. Chronic anxiety is persistent and may occur in the presence or absence of stressful events.
The most common signs of social anxiety include a fear of being embarrassed or humiliated when observed by others. Children and adolescents may experience intense anxiety when the object of scrutiny and/or avoid a wide range of situations such as speaking in front of others, going to parties, eating in public, taking tests, attending school, or using public bathrooms.
The most common signs of panic attacks include difficulty breathing, palpitations, chest pain, dizziness, trembling or shaking. Panic attacks typically occur in the absence of stressful events (ďout of the blueĒ). Children and adolescents may avoid a wide range of situations such as crowds, stores, public transportation, movie theaters, or being away from home due to the fear of having a panic attack.
The most common signs of obsessions are repetitive, uncomfortable thoughts of violence, contamination, and self-doubt. The most common signs of compulsions (rituals) include repetitive behaviors such as checking, touching, arranging, counting and cleaning (e.g., hand washing).
The number of places for the coping skills program are limited, so interested parents are encouraged to call Dr. Eisen at (201) 692-2593 or e-mail him at firstname.lastname@example.org for information and specific requirements regarding participation. Interested parents can also visit the Child Anxiety Disorders Clinic website: http://alpha.fdu.edu/ucoll/ps/anxiety.html
For youth that do not meet the specified criteria, low-cost programs are also available in the Center for Psychological Services for treating a wide range of social, behavioral, and emotional issues.