There are many labels for what we deem as "different" in our society. In my opinion, Autism is the most overused. I can't tell you how many people assume a child is Autistic because they are anxious or tune out around crowds. So how do you know when to be alarmed and when to let it ride out?
People with social anxiety disorder (sometimes called “social phobia”) have a marked fear of social or performance situations in which they expect to feel embarrassed, judged, rejected, or fearful of offending others.
Social anxiety disorder symptoms include:
- Feeling highly anxious about being with other people and having a hard time talking to them
- Feeling very self-conscious in front of other people and worried about feeling humiliated, embarrassed, or rejected, or fearful of offending others
- Being very afraid that other people will judge them
- Worrying for days or weeks before an event where other people will be
- Staying away from places where there are other people
- Having a hard time making friends and keeping friends
- Blushing, sweating, or trembling around other people
- Feeling nauseous or sick to your stomach when other people are around
A thorough mental health evaluation is also helpful, because anxiety disorders often co-exist with other related conditions, such as depression or obsessive-compulsive disorder.
In the meantime, you can help your child in other ways. Like getting a good nights rest to prepare for the day ahead. Many children that suffer from anxiety have poor sleep patterns; falling asleep is usually the most difficult. Weighted blankets for anxiety can help your child relax and get to sleep quicker. The weight from the blankets helps to decrease nervous system activity and release serotonin..this is commonly known as deep pressure therapy. In addition to the weighted anxiety blanket, natural sleep aides like melatonin have worked wonders for my teenage son.