A step-by-step guide to help parents with anxious children
VANCOUVER, March 28, 2017 /CNW/ - The Anxiety Disorders Association of British Columbia (AnxietyBC™) today announced the launch of My Anxiety Plan (M.A.P.) for children – a free online anxiety management toolkit and step-by-step guide for parents of children with anxiety. The tools in M.A.P. are created using Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT), an evidence-based psychological treatment used to treat anxiety. M.A.P. can be used to manage eleven different anxiety and anxiety related disorders and is available on the AnxietyBC website.
"One in four Canadians will have at least one anxiety disorder in their lifetime," said AnxietyBC Executive Director, Judith Law. "What's more, children are at an increased risk of developing mental illness, as almost 70% of mental health problems begin in childhood. AnxietyBC is regularly contacted by Canadians who have limited or no coverage for psychological services. With 1.2 million youth in Canada under the age of 19 living with some form of mental illness, it's important that we provide free, practical, and trusted resources to support children's mental health in Canada."
M.A.P. is separated into five parts and broken down into easy to manage sessions that the parent can complete with the child. Each part consists of tools and worksheets that the parent can use to help the child learn how to cope with unwanted anxiety. Session activities include understanding what happens to the body when we become anxious, learning how to change the way we think about anxiety, and discovering how to decrease excessive anxiety by gradually exposing oneself to anxiety-provoking situations and activities that were previously avoided. The parent, or parent and child, can work at their own pace to complete the sections.
"We developed M.A.P. using the principles of CBT, which teaches the child how to deal with routine stressors and excessive anxiety, rather than trying to control or eliminate these factors," said registered psychologist, Katherine Martinez. "CBT has been very successful in treating anxiety, in fact, for youth with specific anxiety disorders, some studies demonstrate that CBT can be successful in 50 percent or more of youth. The tools developed in M.A.P. help to support increased tolerance of anxiety and healthy coping, in a calm and mindful way."
M.A.P. for children includes an orientation video on how to develop the personalized anxiety plan by using AnxietyBC's templates, tools, and worksheets. You can find M.A.P. on AnxietyBC's website at https://www.anxietybc.com/parenting/creating-a-map/. For other resources and strategies for parents, visit https://www.anxietybc.com/parenting/parent-child. The AnxietyBC website provides evidence-based self-help resources on anxiety for its nearly two million yearly visitors.
The Anxiety Disorders Association of British Columbia (AnxietyBC™) is a non-profit organization established in 1999 to promote awareness of anxiety disorders and support access to evidence-based resources and treatment. AnxietyBC is the Canadian leader in developing online, self-help, and evidence-based resources on anxiety and anxiety disorders. The organization developed the free MindShift™ app which helps youth and young adults manage anxiety, using step-by-step strategies based on psychological treatment. AnxietyBC is a member of the BC Partners for Mental Health and Addictions Information and one of seven leading mental health and addictions non-profit agencies in British Columbia. BC Partners contribute and collaborate on the development of evidence-based resources and services related to mental health and addictions. For more information about AnxietyBC, please visit www.anxietybc.com.
About Dr. Katherine Martinez
Dr. Katherine Martinez received her degree in clinical psychology from Rutgers University in New Jersey, in the United States. She is a registered psychologist with over 15 years of experience in clinical work, research, and training. Dr. Martinez is currently on staff at the Vancouver CBT Centre where she specializes in cognitive-behavioral assessment and treatment of anxiety, mood, and childhood disorders in children and adolescents, as well as working with college students as they navigate the transition from adolescence into adulthood. She also provides parent effectiveness training to parents and caregivers of children aged 2-18 in both office and home settings as needed.
For further information: Melanie Mitchell, Communications Officer, AnxietyBC at 604.720.0253 or [email protected]