Anxiety, Children, and Meridian Tapping Techniques (MTT)
Elaine Corona, MSW, LCSW
(Add or view comments at the bottom of the page.)
If your child experiences and suffers with anxiety, it is not only hard for them, but hard for you too. Seeing pain in our children brings us pain too. Anxiety disorders are fairly common during childhood, affecting approximately 1 out of every 8 children. Developmentally appropriate anxiety usually has little or no effect on your child's ability to function in daily life but higher levels may cause difficulty with school, friends, and family.
Anxiety is a reaction to a perceived danger or threat. Children have both a lack of experience in life and an incomplete ability to reason logically. Therefore, they are often unable to judge the likelihood of a frightening event and may perceive them as more dangerous than they actually are. Some of the symptoms that are experienced and behaviors you may see with excessive anxiety are:
● phobias and feelings of panic and fear (e.g. fears of bugs, germs, and social situations; school phobia, test-anxiety)
● compulsive behaviors / obsessive thoughts (e.g. excessive hand-washing, hairpulling, compulsive counting, worrying and asking about the same thing over and over)
● physical symptoms (cold or sweaty hands or feet, racing heart, sleep problems, stomachaches)
When your child’s anxiety starts to interfere with their daily functioning or is causing them distress, then it’s time to find a way to help them. There are a number of strategies, techniques and therapies that may help your child. Meridian Tapping Techniques (MTT), relaxation techniques, Mindfulness, Percussive Suggestion Technique (PSTEC), cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT), physical exercise and nutritional / homeopathic therapies are just some of them.
The technique that I would like to focus on is called the Meridian Tapping Technique or MTT. You may also hear MTT referred to as EFT (Emotional Freedom Technique). All the Meridian Tapping Techniques involve putting pressure on acupuncture points (meridians) on our bodies while focusing on the disturbing emotion or thoughts. Often, this releases blocked energy and decreases feelings of anxiety in just a short period of time. “Tapping” works similarly to acupuncture, but without the needles!
Meridian Tapping is very easy to learn and simple to use which is why it is especially suited to children. Once the child has been taught what the “tapping points” are, they are asked to rate the intensity of their feelings of anxiety (or anger or sadness, etc.). Then they “tap” on the points while repeating a statement about the issue that is bothering them. Afterwards, they rate their intensity level and more often than not, it has gone down and sometimes the worry or “bother” has even disappeared. Many case examples demonstrate the incredible healing power of “tapping”.
To illustrate this, let me tell you about a child I worked with who had a severe case of hair-pulling (trichotillomania)...not only had she pulled all of her eyelashes out, but the hair from her eyebrows as well. She was a beautiful girl, but was suffering. She was doing something she did not want to do (pulling out her hair) but couldn’t stop herself. She learned about “tapping” in therapy and was able to stop the pulling completely within a short period of time and now has the most beautiful eyelashes and eyebrows you could ask for. But even more importantly, she is not suffering from the compulsion
to pull or the fear of social rejection anymore.
I specialize in working with children and parents experiencing anxiety. My goal is to help you to decrease your anxiety and that of your child. I use innovative and creative therapies that will help to resolve distressing feelings either of you are experiencing. If you have any questions about this article or would like to discuss
any concerns that you have, please feel free to contact me at the phone number or email address below.
Elaine M. Corona, MSW, LCSW
Counseling by the Shore, LLC
509 Main Street- Suite 2
Avon-by-the-Sea, NJ 07717
Posted November 11, 2010 03:17 PM
I am concerned about my 7yr. old grand daughter. Her parents are getting a divorce. She worries about everything has anxiety and is so negative. She is a sweetheart and this is so painful to watch. We don't live near you can you still help?
thanks for your time, Marie
Posted November 15, 2010 08:53 PM
I'm sorry I've taken so long to respond to you. If you would like to set up an appointment for a phone consult, my contact information is at the end of the article. Also, if you would like to look for an EFT Practitioner in your area, you can look in the directory at eftuniverse.com. I am sure it is very painful to watch your granddaughter going through this. From what you say in your letter, I believe your granddaughter would benefit from using Meridian Tapping. She is very fortunate to have you as her grandmother.
With good thoughts,
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substitute for proper medical care or good common sense.
While EFT has produced remarkable clinical results, it must still be considered to be in the experimental stage
and thus practitioners and the public must take complete responsibility for their use of it.
In addition, the articles on this site represent the views of the authors and do not necessarily reflect those of the
founder of EFT, Gary Craig, nor the owner of this web site, Stefan Gonick.