Dr. Tamar Chansky - What are signs of stress in my kids?

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Just like when adults are stressed, when children are stressed, what you see is a change in their behavior. There may be lots of different ways that this manifests. So that means that their mood may change, they may be more irritable or even more belligerent. You might say this isn't my child, what happened and normally a very cooperative child may start back talking or having tantrums, that kind of things so that's one behavioral change to look for.

Other changes would be more crying, being more clingy, needing you to be there at night when previously they were able to fall asleep on their own and sleep through the night. You may also see changes in appetite where kids are either eating more or not wanting to eat and also changes in activity, they may be more lethargic.

They don't want to go out and do things they normally do or on the other hand, they may seem like they always have to be occupied with something as if if they weren't occupied they'd be thinking about something that they really don't want to, so the key is if you're noticing changes in your child's behavior compared to their baseline, that may signal that they're stressed.