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What treatments are available for weather anxiety?

There are two basic treatments available for weather anxiety: medication and behavior therapy.  And, while none of the medications have specific outcome data for their effectiveness with weather anxiety, the SSRIs (Prozac, Paxil, Effexor, etc.) are routinely used for anxiety disorders in children.  Similarly, A review of treatment options for anxiety disorders in general (Christophersen ER, VanScoyoc, S. Treatments that Work with Children; 2013, Washington, D.C.: APA Books) found that most guidelines suggest that medications, if used, should be used in combination with nonpharmacological treatments. For example, the practice guidelines of the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry (J Am Acad Child Adolesc Psychiatry. 1997;36:69S-84S) acknowledge the limitations in the state of pharmacological treatment of anxiety in children and suggest that it be used as an adjunctive intervention to nonpharmacological treatments. Similarly, Velosa and Riddle (Child Adolesc Psychiatr Clin N Am.2000;9:119) suggest that medication interventions also should include illness education, support, behavioral components such as relaxation training for the child, and behavioral management training for the parents.

Which behavioral treatment approach should be used depends upon the age and cognitive ability of the child.  Children below at least seven and probably eight to nine years of age often do not benefit much from cognitive behavioral therapy, at least not when implemented as one-on-one therapy, but behavior therapy via parent training has been successful.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.