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          Are You Making Your Kids Sick?

          September 02, 2002

          So many of us are living life in the fast lane — and bringing our kids along for the ride. Did you know that your stress, chaotic lifestyle, or yelling may actually be affecting your children’s health, causing them to be sick?

          The next time your child is having sleep disturbances, stomach aches, an asthma attack or is overeating, it may be time for you to look inward.

          Answer Yes, Sometimes or No to the following questions:

          1. Is your child afraid most of the time, but not always able to tell you why?

          2. Has your child gone through a major change — divorce, parent lost job, a move — in the last six months? Does your child have difficulty adapting?

          3. Does your child worry a lot? Does he/she look at normal events with high anxiety and stress?

          4. Does your child often feel lonely? Is he/she isolated from others, or feeling like no one understands his/her fears?

          5. Does your child seem numb or unresponsive to what is happening around him/her? Does your child seem not to care anymore?

          6. Is your child easily fatigued? Is he/she depressed or have little energy?

          Give yourself 2 points for every “yes,” 1 point for every “sometimes,” and 0 points for each “no.”

          0-2: Your child may have some stress, but is handling it well.
          3-6: Your child has stress and could use stress-management techniques.
          7-9: Your child has significant stress, which may have a negative impact on his/her psychological health.
          10-12: Your child is having a stress crisis, and is not living the life he/she deserves.

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