Ways to support your teen’s mental Health
Sitting idle in the dark, staying awake at night, keeping quiet lately, refraining from fun activities! I am noticing it all happening with my teen, but what do I ask? How do I start? Umm, what do I say?
These questions can make your head spin out of concern for your teen. I know right!
Maybe this is the time when you should ensure the well-being of your teen’s mental health.
Reports say that one in five children or youth has a mental health disorder. Almost 70% of mental health problems begin in childhood or adolescence, but many teens don’t get the help they need right away. Teens need to know that they can take charge of their own well-being, have a voice if they start to notice problems, and support others in a respectful way.
Furthermore, teens who share good relationships with caring adults (whom they can turn to), tend to feel better and do better. As a parent, you don’t need to have all the answers. All you need is openness, curiosity, and compassion.
Go through the article to ease the concerns for your teens and come across relevant suggestions.
When should I talk to my teenager?
This is one of the major queries that hovers over the people who are concerned for the mental health of their teens. Well, you can address this issue by making mental health a constant topic of discussion. Be present and interested when your teen wants to talk and don’t be afraid to ask questions to start the conversation.
You can also talk about mental health when you notice that your young one is having a stressful time or is expressing a lot of negative thoughts about themselves or a situation.
What can I say?
Now that you have gained a perception regarding the best moment to talk about mental health, here’s the time to address the second most common issue.
Here are some key messages to pass on to teens. The more you use them yourself, the more effective they will be.
“We all have mental health issues”
Mental health is an essential part of our health on the whole. When you are mentally healthy, you can cope with stress in a better manner. Moreover, when you are experiencing poor mental health, it can be difficult for you to have high self-esteem.
You can explain to your teen about the factor of commonness associated with mental health issues. Also, it is essential for you to understand that mental health is as important as physical health, so don’t ignore such problems. Even if your young one is diagnosed with a mental illness, don’t worry or let them panic, it can be treated.
“You can share it with me”
You can invite your teen to help you out with certain tasks and involve them in such kinds of conversations. By talking to them about stuff like asking them about their day, knowing about what they have been doing lately, etc., you can establish a convenient base for ensuring the wellness of their mental health.
You can remind and encourage them about the fact that you are always there to help them get over the emotional challenges and struggles they might be going through.
“Bad days are part of life”
Having a bad day or a bad week sometimes is very normal. Furthermore, it’s common to feel depressed, stressed, or anxious when you go through conflict, disappointment, loss, or other overwhelming situations. But the point to keep in mind is that the feelings related to a particular situation should not affect your personality or behavior. So instead of pondering and recalling past experiences, you must learn to get back to your previous self once the situation is out of your way.
For example, if your teen feels anxious about a school project and it certainly did not go that great, tell them that it’s okay! You must ask them to remove that feeling as soon as the project is finished. Suggest them to work for things that are productive instead of spending their valuable time thinking about the other possibilities of their performance.
“Say it if you have a problem”
If you are concerned about your mental health, speak up and seek help. But if it’s about the teens who appear to be going through this situation, ask them to ensure such concerns. And the most important part is to make them comfortable enough to share their problems or ask for help.
Keeping a check on such issues allows you to deal with problems before they get worse or have a greater impact on your life. If the teens are not comfortable talking about it with their parents or guardians, they can talk to a counselor and find an accurate way out of the problem.
If you are concerned about your teen, listen to your instincts. Gather as much information as possible. You are probably the best person to know if your young one’s behavior needs more attention. Make an appointment with a trusted professional with a solid background.
It can be difficult to distinguish between the symptoms of a mental disorder and the attitudes that all children adopted from time to time. As a parent or an elder, you can observe these behaviors, rely on your observations and act accordingly.
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