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Separation Anxiety

Almost all young infants experience anxiety during the earliest separations from their caretakers. Sometimes separation anxiety can continue beyond the expected age and interfere with a child's ability to function. Separation anxiety can be expected to begin to resolve for separation anxiety, separation anxiety disorder most children at 18 months of age.

Separation Anxiety Disorder is a specific psychiatric diagnosis consisting of separation anxiety starting at preschool or thereafter. Separation anxiety disorder may prevent a child from achieving critical developmental milestones, such as leaving his parent to go to school.


A. The diagnosis of separation anxiety disorder should be based on information from multiple persons, including the parents, teachers, and child. Separation anxiety disorder may also present as misbehavior, opposition, or poor academic performance.

Important features of the criteria include the worry about possible harm befalling a major attachment figure, worry about past events, refusal to go to school, and fear of going to sleep without being near a parent.

A child who has separation anxiety disorder will usually appear physically clinging to or shadowing a parent, or refuse to go outside to play or to watch television in another room.

For some children, the disorder may be Separation Anxiety Separation Anxiety exacerbated by separation anxiety, separation anxiety disorder depression or by family dysfunction seperation

Differential Diagnosis

School phobia is characterized by fear of Separation Anxiety Separation Anxiety something at school (eg, a bully), not fear of separation from parents. School refusal is Separation Anxiety Separation Anxiety related to a specific reason for refusing to attend school, such as fear of failure or dislike of a teacher.