Separation Anxiety Disorder

A disorder in which a child becomes excessively anxious when separated from parents.
Children are especially prone to separation anxiety during times of stress.
Separation anxiety differs from normal clinginess. Children with the disorder can’t think about anything but the present fear of separation. They may have nightmares or regular physical complaints. They may be reluctant to go to school or other places.
Treatment includes talk therapy and possibly anti-anxiety medication.


Cluster Number:
Wiki Number: PW202
Diagnosis: Separation Personality Disorder
US Patients: 5%-25% of children; 2% of adults
World Patients:
Sex Ratio: B;G+
Age Onset: Normal 8-14 months; usually finished by age 3.
Brain Area: amygdala, ventrolateral and dorsomedial areas of the prefrontal cortex
Symptoms: reluctance, worry about being away from home, or away from loved one, nightmares if away from home
Progression: anxiety on separating from home or a specific loved one or significant others
Causes: American Psychiatric Association considers this a normal part of development except for the significantly older.
Medications: tricyclic antidepressants. SSRI’s
Therapies: counseling for the child and family, behavioral therapies, contingency management with “praise”


The world-wide medical research
reports chosen for each diagnosis 

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PubMed article’s summary-abstract.

  • The "self" in pain: high levels of schema-enmeshment worsen fibromyalgia impact
    by Myrella Paschali on October 13, 2021

    CONCLUSIONS: Our results indicate that schema-enmeshment is associated with greater intrusiveness of chronic pain on everyday life, thereby posing significant limitations on the emotional and physical well-being of fibromyalgia patients. Schema-enmeshment also appears to partly account for the deleterious effect of pain catastrophizing on disease impact. The PRISM is a simple tool that may uniquely capture the extent to which chronic pain and illness infiltrates and affects one's self-concept.

  • The Factor Structure and Rasch Analysis of the Fear of COVID-19 Scale (FCV-19S) Among Chinese Students
    by Wei Chen on October 11, 2021

    The Fear of COVID-19 Scale (FCV-19S) is a new one-dimensional scale used to measure fear of an individual about the COVID-19. Given the seriousness of the COVID-19 situation in China when our study was taking place, our aim was to translate and examine the applicability of the FCV-19S in Chinese students. The sample used for validation comprised 2,445 Chinese students. The psychometrical characteristics of the Chinese FCV-19S (FCV-19S-C) were tested using Rasch analysis. Principal component...

  • Prediction of anxiety disorders using a feature ensemble based bayesian neural network
    by Hao Xiong on October 10, 2021

    Anxiety disorders are common among youth, posing risks to physical and mental health development. Early screening can help identify such disorders and pave the way for preventative treatment. To this end, the Youth Online Diagnostic Assessment (YODA) tool was developed and deployed to predict youth disorders using online screening questionnaires filled by parents. YODA facilitated collection of several novel unique datasets of self-reported anxiety disorder symptoms. Since the data is...

  • Parental Psychological Control: Maternal, Adolescent, and Contextual Predictors
    by J Carola PĂ©rez on October 8, 2021

    Parental psychological control (PC) hinders the development of autonomy, identity formation, and the attainment of self-determination and individuation of adolescents. The aim of this study was to deepen the understanding of which conditions increase the risk of the use of maternal PC by simultaneously considering the contribution of adolescent temperament, maternal separation anxiety, and adolescents' perception of interparental conflict. A correlational study involving a sample of 106 Chilean...