Home Health Parents News Now New Research Examines the Biology of Childhood Anxiety New Research Examines the Biology of Childhood Anxiety By Holly Lebowitz Rossi February 06, 2013 Advertisement Save Pin FB More Tweet Email Send Text Message Print shutterstock_1700768 30161 An emerging field of research — and a pioneering study from Taiwan — has begun to offer some clues. Like any kind of human behavior, our response to competitive pressure is derived from a complex set of factors — how we were raised, our skills and experience, the hormones that we marinated in as fetuses. There is also a genetic component: One particular gene, referred to as the COMT gene, could to a large degree explain why one child is more prone to be a worrier, while another may be unflappable, or in the memorable phrasing of David Goldman, a geneticist at the National Institutes of Health, more of a warrior. Understanding their propensity to become stressed and how to deal with it can help children compete. Stress turns out to be far more complicated than we've assumed, and far more under our control than we imagine. Unlike long-term stress, short-term stress can actually help people perform, and viewing it that way changes its effect. Even for those genetically predisposed to anxiety, the antidote isn't necessarily less competition — it's more competition. It just needs to be the right kind. Read the full New York Times article for details on the new research into childhood anxiety. Image: Standardized test, via Shutterstock By Holly Lebowitz Rossi Save Pin FB More Tweet Email Send Text Message Print Comments Add a Comment Be the first to comment! No comments yet. Advertisement Close this dialog window Add a comment New Research Examines the Biology of Childhood Anxiety Add your comment... Cancel Submit Success! Thanks for adding your feedback.