Labor Day Weekend starts tomorrow. After that, children will be heading back to school for the new academic year. Many children look forward to heading back to school so they can renew friendships, participate in sports, and, perhaps, try something new. However, for some children, the new school year can bring on stress and anxiety. So how does a parent handle this situation?
Dr. David Rettew, an associate professor of psychiatry and pediatrics at the University of Vermont, said that studies over the last 10 years have shown anxiety levels are on the rise for youth, especially adolescents. As a result, Dr. Rettew tells parents to watch for signs that your child is experiencing anxiety. Symptoms include body changes like stomach aches and headaches to mental shifts such as trouble sleeping and “worried thoughts.”
So what are a few ways you can help your child lessen the anxiety felt as schools approaches? Dr. Rettew recommends getting a full night’s sleep, practice mindfulness training, eat a balanced diet, and maintain physical activity. For extreme cases, Dr. Rettew advises seeking help from a doctor, psychiatrist, guidance counselor, or a family member. Help your child get the new school year off on the right foot!