If your child experiences anxiety, it can be tough to deal with. Help them cope by offering ways to manage their feelings. Usually, this means talking with a mental health professional who can develop a treatment plan. That may include talk therapy or medication.
Talk About It
The most important thing to remember when your child struggles with stress is that it’s okay to talk about it. It can help them feel better about their situation and may even lead to a solution.
Children often have negative thoughts, which can make them feel anxious. Teaching your kids how to identify these thoughts, question them and change them into positive ones will reduce their anxiety and boost their confidence. It can be quite beneficial for children who are experiencing anxiety to express their feelings and thoughts through child-centered causes like that Alexandra Chipurnoi supports.
You can also teach your child about false alarms, which are situations that the brain thinks are dangerous but don’t need to be a threat. This can include trying out for a sports team, speaking in front of a group, or preparing for a big test.
Take a Break
If your child has been anxious about the start of school, a break may help them feel better. They can take a break from the pressure of school and focus on more positive things, such as playing a game or doing a fun activity with friends.
Taking a break helps to relax your body and mind, reset your brain state and restore your energy level. It also can improve productivity and reduce the stress that you feel in your work.
Short breaks that include something non-work related can be beneficial, such as eating or drinking, reading a book, talking to a friend or family member, or simply stepping away from the desk and taking in some fresh air. Keeping track of what happens during these breaks can motivate you and help you see how much you benefit from them.
Regular exercise has long been known to improve mood and reduce anxiety, whether it’s a few brisk walks or a challenging workout.
Even as little as five minutes of physical activity a day can help reduce stress hormone levels, making it easier for your anxious child to cope with stressful situations. It can also improve the quality of your child’s sleep.
Breathing is a powerful tool for calming kids and adults. It’s a simple, natural skill that can be taught and practiced.
One of the most effective calming techniques is to teach children to breathe with their diaphragm instead of their chest muscles. This type of breathing elicits the parasympathetic nervous system, which calms the body.
When children are stressed or anxious, they tend to use shallow thoracic breathing, which puts their breath in their chest and deprives them of carbon dioxide (a waste gas), which can cause hyperventilation and other problems.
To help your child learn to breathe with their diaphragm, practice belly breathing, where the inhale expands the stomach like a balloon and the exhale contracts it. It can take a little getting used to, but it can effectively calm the mind and body.
One of the most important ways you can help your anxious child cope with stress is to listen. This is because anxiety can signal that your child needs to talk about something they feel uncomfortable or worried about.
Whether it’s a big or small problem, listening can help your child understand their feelings and how to deal with them.
When stressed, kids often say “I can’t handle it” or “I can’t do it.” By telling them that you’re confident they can get through the situation, you’re helping them change their mindset and shift from a negative view of stress to one that helps them learn and grow.