Health

A simple test to see if your child suffers from anxiety

Worried your little one's nervousness is a sign of something more? Try this two-question test.

Child in glasses, bow tie, counting toy

Worried your little one’s nervousness is a sign of something more? Try this two-question test.

Ask: “1. Is my child more shy or anxious than other children her age? 2. Is she more worried than her peers?” It might seem too simple, but a recent study found the test is 83 percent effective in helping parents identify anxiety, a common (and underdiagnosed) mental health issue in youngsters. That’s because we rarely ask ourselves these types of questions, but when we do, the results can help open up an important discussion.

Bottom line: Identifying anxiety early makes it easier to treat, says researcher Karen Hamill of the University of British Columbia.