Mum Sarah told us:

“Anxiety plays a huge part in Hadley’s disability. He can often be overwhelmed by sensory situations such as loud noises, big crowds of people and new places, and he has an incredible fear of anyone with their face covered or wearing full costume, which is termed masklophobia. Added to these fears is the frustration of not always being able to make his body do what he wants it to. The net result is that he can become extremely anxious, so much so that he will vomit at the thought of having to do something that is worrying him.

Having the right equipment is vital for a child’s mental health. In Hadley’s case, this means the correct wheelchair. Whilst we may not be able to wave a magic wand and help Hadley be free of some of the anxiety he experiences, enabling him to be as independent, free of frustration and comfortable as possible really boosts his self-esteem and confidence. Also, having equipment that is ‘cool’ and not clinical is very important to him. Peer pressure is very real at all ages of development. Who doesn’t want their friends to think their wheelchair is cool instead of old fashioned or medical looking?”

Anxiety disorders form a category of mental health diagnoses that lead to excessive nervousness, fear, apprehension, and worry. These disorders alter how a person processes emotions and behave, also causing physical symptoms.