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How to Help Your Child Handle Stress Effectively

 By Raisa Weisspapir 

Dear Parents! In our busy lives, we often feel stressed about our relationships, finances, losing a job or our unfair boss. We all want our children to be happy and it is hard to believe that our kids, unfortunately, experience stress too. According to the American Psychological Association, stress among children and teenagers is significantly rising every year.

It is painful to know how deeply children are affected by life situations, and how easily our stress can translate into their lives.

The reactions can range from mild to extreme, but the good news is that we can prevent it from happening.

What causes stress in children?

Some possible stressful situations are :

  •  Birth of a new baby in the family

  • Losing a  pet

  • Adjusting to a new school, a  new teacher or a new school bus driver

  • Making new friends

  • Experiencing parental separation or  divorce

  • Living with parents who are stressed or fight frequently

  • Too many intensive extracurricular activities

  • Peer pressure

How can I tell if my child is stressed?

Kids may experience stress both physically and emotionally. Some of the signs are so subtle and unspecific, that it's not easy to recognize if they are stress-related.  The most common sign of stress is a change in behaviour: 

  • Sleep problems, nightmares

  • Getting angry easily

  • Anxiety or “Butterflies” in the stomach

  • Stuttering

  • Baby talk

  • Bed-wetting

  • Thumb sucking

  • Grinding teeth

  • Fingernail biting

  • Demanding your undivided attention

  • Failing grades or acting out in school

However, it is important to remember that some of these signs could indicate more serious medical conditions and should be discussed with your doctor.

What can I do to help

Stress affects children differently, it depends on a child's personality and physical health. The same stress(e.g., going to a new school) could bring different reactions: while one child might develop an asthma attack, another child might become severely constipated. Homeopathic medicine takes a very individual and safe approach to each patient. I truly believe it is one of the best medicines which gently helps your child overcome physical and emotional stress, and naturally prevent any health problems caused by it.

Practical tips for parents

  • Boost your child's self-confidence.

 Praise them for a good deed, emphasize they've been helpful today, make a sincere compliment if they make an effort to improve or achieve a goal. Say  “thank you” to your kids and really mean it!  Let them know how grateful you are to them for being your amazing child and how grateful you are to be their parents.

  • Laugh with your kids!

Laughter is one of my favourite stress management techniques. It distracts a child from anger, fears and stress. While reducing the level of stress hormones like cortisol, it also increases the level of “happy” hormones like endorphins, and the amount of antibody-producing cells, which strengthen the immune system.

  • Share with your child your ways of relaxation.

You can help your child choose enjoyable activities, like exercise, hiking, listening to music,  or dancing. Just listening to exciting Cha-Cha beats in a  professional dance studio, like Lambiance Dance Centre,  elevates your spirit instantaneously and makes you smile.

  • Stay calm and maintain a good relationship with your child!

Healthy and supportive relationships reduce stress and improve your child's overall health and sense of well-being. Make yourself available as much as possible to answer their questions. Let them know you will always love them regardless of  mistakes made.  Children who feel loved are calmer because they feel more safe and secure.

  • Enjoy every moment with your child!

Spend quality time with your child one-on-one as much as possible, showing how much you enjoy being with him or her.  Talking to your child about what matters to him or her and just being truly present and in the moment with your child will lead you and your child to a happier life.

  • Remember to hug your child!

Think about your childhood, when you faced hard times, wasn't a hug from Mom (or another loved one) enough to make you feel better?

In our busy adult life, we often forget about the power of touching and support.A hug and an "I Love You” will bring your child soothing comfort and relaxation!

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