It is considered normal for children to show distress, anger and sadness when separated from their primary caregiver within the early childhood years (0-5 years old). In fact, the emergence of separation anxiety often emerges around the time of a child’s first birthday. Although this is a normal difficulty that many children experience, it is nonetheless unsettling for all parties involved – the child, the parent and the other caregiver or adult. In fact, many parents experience extremely difficult emotions similar to their child’s distress when separating. However, it is important to manage this distress effectively to allow your child to make gains in the areas of independence and trust.

Below is a list of some tips you can try in helping your child deal with separation anxiety.

If your child persists with difficult behaviour upon separating even after consistent efforts as suggested above, or if your child is 6- years-old or above, then advice from your pediatrician or a mental health professional may be necessary.

Authored by Annie W. Spell, PH.D. – Psychological Consultant of Leap N Learn

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