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August 30, 2013

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Hospitals report rise in school phobia

With the new semester starting next week, local hospitals have reported a rise in the number of children suffering from school phobia.

About 20 percent of patients treated at the local pediatric hospitals had symptoms of school phobia, a type of anxiety disorder. It usually happens  when children face tough schools exams or at the start of a new semester.

Doctors said parents should be concerned if their children are too sick to go to school and vomit, or suffer from insomnia, without any apparent reason.

“Children at the first year of a primary school and those who are entering the final year (of primary and middle schools) tend to suffer from this anxiety complex,” said Dr Zhang Yiwen, director of Shanghai Children’s Medical Center’s child-care department.

“In addition to academic pressure, the syndrome is also related to personality and a child’s own family and school.

“Children are likely to suffer from school phobia if they are very shy, or do not socialize, or have poor learning ability. Overprotective parents or those having high expectations from their kids also suffer from the phobia,” Dr Zhang said. “Most symptoms fade in a month’s time but if it persists, parents should consult doctors.” 



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