Going to school usually is an enjoyable event for young children. For some it brings fear or panic. Parents have cause for concern when the child is sick because of stress, “pretending to be sick” or exaggerated physical symptoms to stay home and not go to school. Often the child between five and ten years of age who behaves in this way is suffering a paralyzing fear of having to leave the safety of family and home.
It is very difficult for parents to deal with this childish panic, but these fears can be treating successfully with professional help. This irrational fear usually appears first in children attending schools for children of pre-school age, a “kindergarten” or first grade, being more common in children attending second grade. The child usually complains of headaches, throat or stomach just before the time to go to school. The “disease” will improve when it is allow staying in the house, only to reappear the next morning before going to school. In some cases, the child refuses completely to leave the house.
Refusal to go to school usually appears after a period in which the child has been home with his mother, for example, after the summer holidays, the holidays, or after a brief disease. It can happen after an event that causes stress, such as the death of a family member or a pet, changing schools or moving to a new neighborhood.
Children who have an irrational fear of school may feel insecure if they are left alone in a room and can demonstrate behavior clinging to parents, and even become the shadow of their parents at home. These fears are common in children with anxiety disorder. Children have trouble sleeping, an exaggerated fear and an unrealistic fear of animals, monsters, thieves or darkness. Potential long-term effects can be very serious for a child with persistent fears if not receive professional attention.
The child may develop serious educational or social if you stop going to school and see their friends for a long time problems. Parents and children can benefit from taking the child to a child and adolescent psychiatrist, who will work with them in their effort to immediately return the child to school and other daily activities. As panic ensues, when leaving the house not being in school the child usually is calm once in school; for some children an extensive treatment is required to treat the causes of fear.
Older children or adolescents who refuse to attend school usually suffer more severe disease and often require treatment that is more intensive. In any case, the irrational fear of leaving home and parents can be treated successfully, and parents should not delay in seeking professional help. Your child’s doctor can refer the parents to a child and adolescent psychiatrist.