Treatment Options for Childhood and Teen Anxiety

Treatment Options for Childhood and Teen Anxiety

Anxiety in children and teens is a common but often overlooked issue. If your child is experiencing persistent anxiety that interferes with their daily life, seeking treatment can provide them with the tools they need to manage their symptoms and improve their quality of life. Here are some effective treatment options for childhood and teen anxiety.

Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy (CBT)

Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy (CBT) is one of the most widely used and effective treatments for anxiety in children and teens. CBT focuses on identifying and changing negative thought patterns and behaviors that contribute to anxiety.

How it Works:

Cognitive Restructuring: Helps children recognize and challenge irrational or harmful thoughts.

Behavioral Techniques: Includes exposure therapy, which gradually exposes the child to anxiety-provoking situations in a controlled manner to reduce fear and avoidance.

Skill Building: Teaches coping skills, such as relaxation techniques and problem-solving strategies.



In some cases, medication may be prescribed to help manage anxiety symptoms, particularly if they are severe or if therapy alone is not sufficient. Medication can assist a child or teen to bring their "big emotions" to a more manageable level. Alongside CBT, they can learn to manage these emotions and then we can wean them off the medication. In rare and severe cases, some people require a small maintenance dose. 

Type of Medication:


Family Therapy

Family therapy involves the entire family in the treatment process, which can be particularly beneficial for younger children.

How it Works:


School-Based Interventions

Collaboration with school counselors and teachers can provide additional support and accommodations to help your child manage anxiety in the academic setting.

Possible Interventions:


Mindfulness and Relaxation Techniques

Mindfulness and relaxation techniques can help children and teens manage stress and reduce anxiety symptoms.




There are several effective treatment options for childhood and teen anxiety, each with its benefits and considerations. Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy (CBT), medication, family therapy, school-based interventions, mindfulness, and relaxation techniques all offer valuable tools for managing anxiety. The best approach will depend on your child's individual needs and should be determined in consultation with a healthcare professional. Early intervention and a supportive environment can make a significant difference in helping your child navigate their anxiety and lead a fulfilling life.