Following the 2016 election, Latinx children have shown higher levels of anxiety and depression compared to their non-Latinx peers due to political turmoil. This, in turn, according to UniodosUS’s Deputy Director of Research Patricia Foxen, has exposed Latinx youth to “profound hostility, bullying, and overt xenophobia in schools and other social spaces.” It’s important to keep in mind cultural context and how a child’s anxiety may affect the way they relate and respond to their identity and heritage.
That’s why Latinx Talk Therapy was established with the core purpose of helping Chicago’s Latinx community live happy, meaningful lives. Contact us online or call (312) 620-7551 for anxiety therapy in English or Spanish.
Identifying Anxiety Symptoms
If you’re wondering if your child is experiencing anxiety, some common symptoms include excessive worry, restlessness, irritability, difficulty concentrating, as well as physical complaints like headaches or stomach aches. Unlike non-Latinx children, Latinx youth experience additional circumstances that may heighten their anxiety and the intensity or frequency of these symptoms. If you are unsure if your child is suffering from anxiety, an anxiety therapist can help.
The Necessity of Having a Safe Space
You may be familiar with the term “safe space” and some of the mockery that comes with it. While some may believe creating safe spaces is a way to coddle today’s youth, in actuality, these spaces do the opposite. Originating in the mid-1960s by the LGBTQIA+ community, safe spaces were a way for the community to be out with like-minded company and find practical resistance to political and social repression.
This is especially important for Latinx children who crave a culturally sensitive environment that values and respects their background. Creating a safe space involves understanding and acknowledging their experiences, validating their emotions, and offering support without judgment through an anxiety therapist.
The Role of an Anxiety Therapist
Latinx children deserve medical professionals, like anxiety therapists, who are able to understand and relate to their backgrounds. Unfortunately, there are negative stigmas relating to mental health disorders that are unique to the Latinx experience. A Latinx anxiety therapist will be able to provide a safe and supportive environment where children can express their feelings, explore their concerns, and develop healthy coping mechanisms.
Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy for Anxiety Management
Identifying and Challenging Thoughts
Through CBT Therapy, children can work to identify anxious thoughts in order to understand them. If a child expresses worry over going to class, for example, an anxiety therapist will be able to help the child understand why that is. In turn, they can teach children to challenge negative thinking patterns by replacing them with positive ones.
Relaxation and Mindfulness Techniques
Anxiety therapists teach Latinx children relaxation and mindfulness as tools to manage anxiety. This can include deep breathing exercises, guided imagery, and grounding techniques to help children regulate their emotions and reduce anxiety symptoms.
Cultural Relevance and Identity Exploration
Anxiety therapists who understand the Latinx cultural context incorporate cultural relevance into therapy. They can help children explore their cultural identity, values, and traditions, in order to validate their experience and foster a sense of pride and resilience when they need it the most.
Family Involvement and Support
The Latinx community is proud to be family-oriented. Everything we do is for our families! That’s why incorporating family involvement and support is crucial in supporting a child’s mental health. More often than not, a lot of the negative stigma surrounding mental health is due to a lack of access to health care and information. An anxiety therapist can help bridge that gap, so the child and their family have the tools and resources they need to properly understand one another.
Anxiety Support for Latinx Youth in Chicago
We can’t change what happens in the world around us, but we can change how it affects us. At Latinx Talk Therapy, our licensed anxiety therapists utilize CBT Therapy techniques to give patients the tools they need to get one step closer to living worry-free. Contact us online or call (312) 620-7551 to schedule an appointment today!