In today’s busy world, it’s easy for anyone – even kids – to feel overwhelmed. For kids, maybe they are worried about homework and grades, or maybe they are being bullied in school. Maybe they are juggling too many extracurricular activities or perhaps there is stress in the home, like a pending divorce or money issues. It can be a lot to handle and without appropriate coping techniques, stress can affect the way a child thinks, acts, and feels.

Physically, stress may cause headaches or stomach aches. A child’s eating habits may change, as well as their sleep patterns. Emotionally, kids may act out in anger or fear. They might become withdrawn or unusually quiet or overreact without warning.

Help your child learn to handle stress:

  1. Set the example and do your best to manage your own stress in healthy ways.
  2. Listen to your child (without interrupting) to learn about what is bothering them. Help them understand the situation, then talk about how you can work together to make things better.
  3. Get moving! There’s nothing better than working off stress with a walk or other outdoor activity. Exercise naturally releases stress-relieving hormones in the body.
  4. Focus on quality sleep with a nightly routine that includes turning off digital devices at least an hour before bed and a relaxing activity like reading a book together.
  5. Create family routines to establish continuity and time together. Eat dinner together regularly or create a weekly game night to help prevent or relieve stress. Give your child the opportunity to decide the family activity which will help them feel they have control over a situation.
  6. Limit your child’s access to the news or violent movie and games which can result in fear and anxiety.

Don’t forget that your CPCMG provider is available to help at any time.