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Common Psychiatric Kids Issues

     Children can also have psychiatric issues that go beyond common frustrations, tempertantrums, or separation anxiety. Sometimes they are predispositions passed down as personality traits. Sometimes they are caused by a difficult birth or early medical intervention. Sometimes they are the result of neglect or bullying or struggling in school. Exposure to high stress in the family, family fighting or violence, or caregiver rejection. Never the less, children cope in different ways. Understanding your child and finding support for them can make all the difference. This page is informational and designed to help you seek care for them.


Auditory Processing Disorder

Auditory processing disorder (APD) is a hearing/understanding problem that affects approximately 5% of school-aged children. Individuals  with this condition (known as central auditory processing disorder -CAPD), cannot process and understand what is heard in the same way other persons do.  As a result, they experience slower and distorted comprehension as dyscoordination occurs between the brain and the ears. Persons with this may appear to be distracted and share similar symptoms as ADHD. click photo for link.

ADHD

 ADHD is believed to be one of the most common neurodevelopmental disorders in children. The diagnosis should not be made hastily as it  shares symtpoms with several other conditions. Today, it is often diagnosed in childhood and lasts into adulthood. Symptoms vary among Children and adults. Individuals often have trouble paying attention, are easily distracted, can be impulsive, or be overly active.

Autism Spectrum Disorder

"Autism spectrum disorder (ASD) is a complex neurodevelopmental condition that causes persistent challenges in communication, social interaction, speech,  and nonverbal communication, along with  restricted or repetitive behaviors. The severity of ASD symptoms vary with each person. click photo for link.

Anxiety

 Anxiety in children presents as  fear or excessive worry, often causing irritability and anger. Symptoms may include trouble sleeping, physical complaints of fatigue, headaches, or stomach aches. Occastionally anxious children do not share their worries and fears with their caregivers.

Pediatric Bipolar

In children persistent irritability and mood fluctuation without obvious mood swings occur. Symptoms tend to be a mixture of depression, irritability, aggitation, and anxiety. In adolescents, mood shifts appear as episodes that also include euphoria, grandiosity and paranoia. click photo for link.

PANS

 PANS patients, suffer from uncontrollable emotions, irritability, anxiety and loss of academic ability and handwriting skills. Although PANDAS was identified as a medical syndrome more than a decade before PANS, it has been classified as a subset of PANS. To date, PANDAS is the only known subset of PANS, but we may discover more causes in the future. 

PANDAS

Known as Pediatric Autoimmune Neuropsychiatric Disorders Associated with Streptococcal Infections (PANDAS). Symptoms  occur dramatically, almost happening “overnight and out of the blue". Some symptoms can include motor or vocal tics or both and obsessions, compulsions, or both. Children often become moody and irritable, have anxiety attacks, and experience separation anxiety from parents or caregivers. PANDAS was identified as a medical syndrome 10 yerars before PANS, and is a subset of PANS.  click photo for link.

Sensory Processing Disorder

 Sensory processing disorder is a condition where the brain has trouble receiving and responding to stimuli that affects the senses. Previously called sensory integration dysfunction, it is not considered a distinct medical diagnosis. Persons with sensory processing disorder are described as overly sensitive to environmental stimuli, common sounds, smells, and lighting which can be perceived as overwhelming and irritating.

Pediatric Medical Trauma

Children (andcaregivers) can have traumatic stress reactions to pain, injury, serious illness, medical procedures, and invasive or frightening treatment experiences. These are known as traumatic stress reactions that involve psychological and physiological symptoms of arousal, re-experiencing, and avoidance. Experiencing pain, feeling helpless and out of control, and being separated from caregivers are factors  contributing to the traumatic nature of medical events.

click photo for link.

Learning Disorders

Kids with learning disorders are often  frustrated struggling to master a subject despite working hard.  They commonly act out, behave helpless, and sometimes withdraw from others. Learning disorders sometimes co-ocur with emotional and behavioral disorders, such as attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) or anxiety.

Influences on Behavior and Mental Health

Sleep and Behavior Issues

“Children who aren't getting the recommended amount of sleep have more difficulties with attention, with emotional control, with reasoning, with problem-solving, and also have behavioral problems,” lead author Dr. Elsie Taveras told Reuters Health. click photo for link.

Fast Food and Learning difficulties

The Daily Mail reported, "Diets high in processed foods are causing bad behaviour and learning difficulties in children, scientists have warned." They cited researchers who found  junk food stops the brain working properly and leads to underachievement and many other  disorders. click photo for link.

Sugar and Kids Moods

Even low levels of processed sugar in children can cause interference with neurotransmitters that balance and stabilize moods. Their is a direct link between processed sugar and depression and anxiety in children. Most importantly elevated sugar levels cause inflammation of brain cells of the hippocampus.

Child Behavior & Processed Foods

Negative child behavior like hyperactivity, irritability, and aggressiveness has been linked to Artificial food dyes and preservatives in processed foods. Disease Proof, reported that food dyes are found in most processed foods, especially ones marketed to children that contain colorful  cereal, juice, and candies. Common dyes implicated  for causing mood swings, irritability, and hyperactivity include Yellow 5, Yellow 6, Blue 1, and Red 40.

Learning More

Books to Support Kids

Calming Videos & Music

Parent Support Books

Specific Parenting Topics

If your mind feels wild count from 1 to 10 (slowly).

-Susan Gilis Chapman

Working towards more balanced moods

Meditation helps us develop a peaceful mind by showing us how to let go of thoughts and all the dramas they trigger. 

-Susan Gilis Chapman

Make non-stressful memories

Encourage Imagination

Daily Physical Activity

Provide opportunities to Listen

Encourage balanced Friendships

Teach Manners

Hug your Kids

Teach Persistence

BAKYARD SENSORY DIET ACTIVITIES

Slide down a hill on cardboard

Grass sensory bin

Use a magnifying glass to inspect the grass and dirt

Mud kitchen

Roll down hills

Animal walks with barefeet

Create nature “soup” with grass, flower petals, sticks, etc.

Pick flowers

Cartwheels and tumbling on the grass (barefoot or with shoes!)

Water Table with nature

Cartwheel or tumbling

Target games

Bean bag games

Relay races

Hide and seek games

Simon Says games

Tag

Bell parade

Kazoo sound hunt

Listening for birds or animals

Record backyard sounds and playback the recording. Try to recognize and name the sound and where it was located in the yard.

Fill containers with items from the backyard. Shake plastic containers or even paper bags with the items and see if your child can name the objects.

Play Marco Polo in the yard!.

Learn more:

https://www.theottoolbox.com/outdoor-sensory-diet-activities-for-backyard/



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