Child Anxiety

Child anxiety, can present as refusal or reluctance to go to school which so easily arises from a child’s anxiety manifesting as extreme shyness or nervousness. They could have difficulty or fear interacting with their peers so develop a strong need to stay at home with family members. Their anguish may be expressed in the form of frequent temper tantrums, crying bouts, broken sleep and/or nightmares. Bedwetting is not unusual. The anxious child who does attend school may also have difficulty in concentrating and so their academic performance tends to drops off, neither is it unusual for children to present with physical complaints such as headaches, stomach-ache, muscle aches and general tiredness.

Tackling child anxiety successfully is of paramount importance for the sanity and well-being of both parent and child. We need to therefore consider a number of strategies.

Firstly, we need to question how effective we are as Primary carers/parents in creating a stable, predictable environment at home. What this means, is that we need to develop routines at home so our children know what is coming up next. The bedtime routine for instance, has the same format each evening i.e. the evening meal is followed by play time then having a wash/bath and leading to getting dressed into pyjamas prior to a cuddle and read before bed. Likewise there would be a set routine in the morning which might be getting dressed after getting up, eating breakfast and only playing with toys/watching TV when they are completely ready for school. These examples do sound quite ‘picture perfect’ especially when these two periods of the day are the very times that our children are likely to play up and become difficult to manage. So how might we manage this situation positively, how might we make it happen?

As parents we need to buy into the concept of being consistent and therefore being predictable. No matter how much our children play up, we need to resist giving in and consistently stick to the set of home rules that we have already put in place. These prominently placed home rules of which there should be no more than five, are placed somewhere visible (in picture form for younger children). House rule examples could be something like ‘Always use a quiet voice indoors’, ‘Always knock and wait, before entering someone’s bedroom’, ‘Always be polite to each other’, ‘Balls are for the outdoors only’.

We make our house rules to suit the smooth running of our own family unit, so they may vary from family to family. Needless to say, small rewards (other than food, sweets and money) need to be given to incentivise your children to keep to the rules, but do remember to keep the rewards varied and very affordable. As the new habits are established, start easing off the rewards replacing them with more praise. Children love positive attention and are therefore more likely to repeat the behaviour for which they are praised.

All these strategies require a lot of personal effort on the parent’s side but it is well worth the investment. By creating a safe positive home environment that is predictable and stable, your children will find home life comforting, nurturing and stabilising to the extent that a solid foundation of safety has been created at home. In this way our children are being equipped to deal with anything that life throws at them, outside the home. They have a home that is safe and predictable providing a safe secure haven in which they can flourish and recover from the day’s ills. Naturally when children feel valued, listened to and praised for when they do well and loved unconditionally, they will also learn there are sensible repercussions for when they misbehave. They therefore grow up with confidence, self-esteem as well as a sense of personal responsibility for any actions they take. Anxiety has little room in their lives when they grow up safely and securely with a ‘Can Do’ attitude.

Sometimes, despite putting these very effective measures in place, a few children may still present with some anxiety concerns. We now need to look at the fact that children learn by copying. They so easily copy the behaviour of those around them.  Be mindful of members in the family that are presenting with anxiety concerns, in which case it is important that the adult or family member is treated for their anxiety as indeed is the anxious child.

The preferred treatment, Bach flower therapy, which is a natural treatment, free of side effects, is totally safe for babies to take and does not interfere with any other medication, is highly effective yet gentle. There are thirty eight plant based Bach flower remedies (one for every possible emotion that needs balancing). Mimulus is likely to be the remedy of choice here to balance general known fears and anxiety. (However other emotions could be involved that require balancing. Advice can be given on request}.

Mimulus is taken over a 3 week period in drinks or directly to the mouth via a pipette as droplets. If the emotion has been longstanding then the remedy may need to be repeated two or three times with the understanding that the fears and anxiety will progressively diminish. For more information read Preparing your Bach Flower Remedies and Bach Flower Remedies

Bach flower remedies are one of nature’s greatest stress busters and I would strongly recommend these remedies find their way into everyone’s medicine cabinet. Each 30 ml stock bottle contains 80 drops and as only 2 drops are needed to take you through a 3 week treatment, each stock bottle is a very economical form of treatment. Despite ‘use by dates’ the stock bottles remain robust to the last drop for however long. Licensing laws require ‘use by dates’ so never throw out your stock bottles of Bach Flower remedies.

For advice on how to chunk down the above strategies into a meaningful do-able plan feel free to discuss how this can be done to ensure your child’s life chances to maximise life opportunities are put in place.

Preparing your Bach Flower Remedies

Preparation

Take two drops from your stock remedy bottle and add it to a 30 ml treatment bottle.

If for example you have 4 prescribed stock remedy bottles, you would use 2 drops from each totalling 8 drops that need to be added to your treatment bottle

Now add spring water to the treatment bottle filling it up to the neck of the bottle

Finally add 1 teaspoon of brandy or any good quality alcohol. This acts as a preservative ensuring the treatment bottle water and drops do not become tainted over the three week period that you will be taking them. Cider vinegar can replace the alcohol if you wish.

Administering

Take 4 drops, four times a day. First thing in the morning, last thing at night and twice in between during the day. The drops can be taken in any drinks, hot or cold, even in soup or they can be taken directly in the mouth via the pipette, but do take care in avoiding contact with parts of the mouth or tongue so as not to contaminate the pipette. Children take half dose i.e. 2 drops four times a day with a mixing bottle containing two or more stock remedies whilst babies take one drop four times a day with a mixing bottle containing two or more stock remedies.

Pets may also be treated with Bach Flower Therapy.

For convenience the drops can be put in a bottle of spring water (8 drops from your treatment bottle) which can be sipped throughout the day and so covering you for two of the four doses taken daily.

Those emotions that have been imbalanced for a substantial amount of time may require a second 3 week treatment or even longer .Recently presenting imbalanced emotions usually become balanced after the initial 3 week treatment period. Children take half dose, babies a quarter.

The remedies are totally safe, can be taken alongside other medication and have no known side effects. Licensing laws require a sell by date to be issued on each bottle but in fact the Bach flower remedies will last untainted so do resist from throwing away partly used stock bottles past their sell by date.

Research conducted by bodies using Bach flower remedies correctly, have shown that Rescue remedy – a collection of five remedies has shown a positive impact on balancing those in high emotional stress situations. Currently pilot studies are in progress to further show the impact of other Bach flower remedies.

What Bach flower for anxiety

‘What Bach flower for anxiety’ is a question that commands some deliberation and discussion. Anxiety can arise from a number of situations and so we need to establish whether the anxiety is personality based or specific to a set of circumstances. True to say, Dr Bach would describe individuals pertaining to being ‘anxiety types’ as presenting with a profile of timidity, shyness, hypersensitivity and being generally fearful of the world around them. They are quiet, may have phobias and do not readily share their fears with others. If you recognise most of these traits in yourself then the Bach flower remedy ‘Mimulus’ is the remedy to balance this anxiety which will help you develop more courage and free you toward living a fuller rewarding and less anxiety ridden life.

This said, we can be undergoing an anxious episode without actually fitting the profile of the Mimulus personality but taking the Bach flower remedy ‘Mimulus’ would be wholly appropriate to balance and calm our anxious state.

In turn another unbalanced emotion can create sleepless nights when the anxiety of feeling overwhelmed by work commitments or life demands, leaves us unable to cope with deadlines which can so easily take us over. This situation commands taking the Bach flower remedy ‘Elm’. This stressful anxious state will return us back to our previously capable selves where our temporary loss of confidence is smoothly restored.

Feeling anxious for other people’s safety particularly when they are close to us, is perfectly natural, however if this anxiety takes on such a level of intensity that we become extremely worried then taking the Bach flower remedy ‘Red Chestnut’ will help relieve us.

‘Aspen’ Bach flower remedy is taken when we become anxious but we just don’t know why, unlike the Mimulus state whereby we recognise the things or situation that is causing our anxiety.

Finally, I need to mention the stress buster of a Bach flower remedy cocktail known as ‘Rescue Remedy’ This remedy comprises of five remedies. Cherry Plum, Rock Rose, Star of Bethlehem. Clematis and Impatiens. This remedy is taken when we feel so stressed by a situation that it becomes all consuming. So extreme nerves arising from an imminent interview, driving test, exam, dental appointment etc might induce a state that can be effectively relieved by taking this remedy. The characteristics of Cherry Plum helps balance the emotion where we feel we are losing control akin to a volcano about to erupt. We take Rock Rose when we feel absolute terror and about to or having a panic attack. Clematis is for when we go into a dream-like state when under a lot of stress while Impatiens is for those who become very pushy with impatience urgently hurrying themselves and others along. Star of Bethlehem helps us combat being in a state of shock. When we are in a state of high emotional distress ‘Rescue remedy’ recognises all the emotions that can easily come into play and attenuates all those feelings to provide peace of mind and have us feel those situations that previously stressed us, now become manageable and achievable.

Do be aware of the temptation to take Rescue Remedy for any event and dismissing the effectiveness of remedies mentioned earlier, such as ‘Mimulus’ and ‘Elm’. However, do take complete solace in knowing that should we take the wrong remedy, the worst that will happen is the specific emotion we wish to treat will be totally unaffected. The remedies are pure and have no known side effects, are totally safe to be taken alongside conventional medication. We cannot overdose on Bach flower remedies. Matching the right remedy for the emotion being expressed will balance us toward anxiety free harmony.

It is possible to take more than one remedy, in fact we can take up to seven remedies at one time. 2 drops of each remedy are introduced into a 30ml bottle of spring water. Four drops of this mixture (as it is a cocktail of several remedies) is taken four times a day over a three week period. The drops may be taken directly in the mouth but can also be taken in any hot or cold drink, water or soup.

Should you be taking a single remedy, 2 drops can be taken directly from the stock bottle or two drops from the stock bottle are put into a 30ml bottle of spring water whereby 2 drops are taken ( as it is a single remedy) four times a day over a 3 week period.

So, the question ‘What Bach Flower for anxiety’ requires the questioner to reflect a little on their anxiety state and match the specific concern with the appropriate remedy to ensure total relief and peace of mind

Can Bach Flower Remedies be Mixed?

I have often been asked if Bach Flower Remedies can be mixed, and the answer is an emphatical yes.

Bach flower remedies are the perfect remedy for any emotions that are out of balance that create a state of mild anxiety to absolute anguish and all the emotions in between. As there are thirty eight remedies there is a cocktail of remedies that can be taken at anyone time to suit the emotional imbalances being experienced at any particular moment.

When a major event occurs, we are usually affected with a range of emotions rather than a solitary one. We would therefore address those particular emotions and put together a mixture of up to seven remedies in the same treatment bottle to redress this imbalance.

 

For example, If we were to experience losing our job unexpectedly, depending on our own genetic make-up, this might present as a shock to us, likely to cause mental distress and placing us in a state of disbelief, so we would consider taking the remedy, Star of Bethlehem to harmonize this emotion. We would naturally go about applying for new positions, but if difficulties presented in having our applications acknowledged let alone converted into interviews we may feel so dejected we might consider stopping altogether. In this instance we may require the remedy Gentian. Gentian helps us get over setbacks quite quickly and getting us back on track.

If, on the other hand we make the decision that completing job applications is a totally hopeless exercise then taking the remedy Gorse would place us in a position of valuing the process of job seeking and we are likely to regain hope in securing a new job.

Should we start to withdraw from friends and people generally because that is how we tend to react when unhappy with our circumstances and preferring to be alone, then the remedy Water Violet is ideal for getting us to re-engage with others again.

If we begin to become fearful of losing our home, for fear of never getting another job with a secure income, then the remedy Mimulus would be most helpful to regain courage in this area and release the overwhelming emotion of fear and free us to re-focus on action that needs to be taken.

Of course our confidence could also be temporarily lost so Elm is the remedy to take to regain our confidence in our skills again. However if your confidence is lost to the extent that you no longer try for a job as you believe you will never be good enough to ever succeed then the remedy Larch would be more appropriate to raise your self-esteem.

You may start to become, touchy and argumentative as a consequence of your circumstances which would suggest taking the remedy Holly so you can return to your former calmer self whilst others find you more approachable.

 

Our thoughts do support our emotions so whilst taking the Bach Flower remedies it is highly recommended to make affirmations (positive self-talk) for each of the emotions we are intending to correct and balance. In this way we are likely to create good habits in supporting our moods and maintaining good health.

 

Any major event, such as losing one’s job, could have the impact of affecting your emotions to the extent that six of the eight emotions mentioned above could be the ones that are out of balance. We would address this anguish with a cocktail of six remedies. For some individuals a major event can unbalance many more and a different range of emotions in a short period of time after the event.

 

Two drops of each remedy is added to a 30ml bottle of spring water. Spring water is preferred to tap water as it is purer and is free of additives such as chlorine. A teaspoon of brandy or glycerine or cider vinegar is added to act as a natural preservative. The remedies will blend naturally together and work energetically together to help you transcend from distress to a calmer state. Four drops of this treatment bottle of remedies are then taken four times a day, taken via the dropper directly into the mouth, or put into any hot or cold drink. It can even be rubbed on the temples of the forehead. There are no known side effects, and can be safely taken with conventional medicine. When we balance the emotions by taking these remedies over a three week period, we remove the stress and we balance our own bio-chemistry so our cells can re-generate and heal. Be aware that new emotions may pop up that need balancing for us to regain full health.

 

Knowing that we can mix Bach flower remedies to create a healing treatment cocktail to balance our emotions towards mental and physical radiance, helps provide us with the courage, motivation and energy to re-design our lives for the better and achieve good health.

Can You Overdose on Bach Flower Remedies?

Can you overdose on Bach Flower Remedies? This is a question I am sometimes asked by people who are unfamiliar with Bach Flower Remedies. I answer with an emphatic ‘No’.

Bach Flower Remedies are totally safe and have no side effects and therefore Bach Flower therapy is a risk free system to use in self-healing. Even though 50% of the remedy stock bottle comprises of brandy acting as a very effective natural preservative, only 2 drops of this remedy will be used in a 30 ml bottle of spring water to make up a treatment bottle. The contents of this treatment bottle will be taken over a 3 week period so the alcohol content is almost negligible. Typically a treatment bottle may hold seven remedies comprising of 14 drops of the stock bottle remedies. If a young child were to consume the whole contents of a treatment bottle they will come to no harm, as the tiny amount of alcohol present in the bottle is too small to have any effect.

There are no plant parts present in any Bach Flower treatment and therefore there are no physical components of any concentration to constitute an overdose. The active elements of each Bach flower remedy is the floral vibration at which it spins, much like the protons and neutrons spinning around the nucleus of every atom of a substance. Science has shown that thoughts are an energetic entity now detectable by sophisticated imaging devices. It is only a question of time for science to catch up further and show the vibrational energy of emotions. Every emotion is preceded with a thought. The Bach Flower Remedies spin at their own particular vibrational level which helps harmonize the emotional energy that is otherwise functioning disharmoniously and causing disease.

We cannot overdose on Bach Flower Remedies as we cannot overdose on vibrational energy, yet this source of healing works without interfering with any drugs, meaning they can be safely taken alongside all conventional medication.