7 Ways to Ease Anxiety in Schools
Almost 4.5 million children between the ages of 3 to 17 have diagnosed anxiety.
Anxiety can be triggered by a buildup of small, stressful situations and also by big events. For children, one of the biggest events they experience is going to school.
If your child struggles with anxiety, there are many ways you can help them. You can ease anxiety by knowing how to recognize it and then being open about it, among other tools.
Read on for seven ways to ease anxiety about school.
1. Know the Signs of Anxiety
Children don’t always have the tools to express what they’re feeling, so you should know how to recognize when your child is anxious. Some signs of anxiety include missing deadlines, not participating in class, and having problems with concentration. Other signs include absenteeism, being tardy, or making frequent visits to the school nurse with an upset stomach.
2. Be Open With Your Child
Before the school year starts, you can talk to your child about the anxiety they might be feeling. Explore what it is about school that causes them to worry, and use that information to start a dialogue with them.
Don't treat their anxiety as something that needs to be stopped. The language you use is important. Be open about their anxiety and let them know that you're there to help them cope.
3. Be Open With the School
If your child suffers from anxiety, the school should know about it. You can make a plan with the school so that they know how to handle your child and so that you're kept in the loop. Before every school year starts, make it a priority to meet with your child's teachers as well.
By speaking with the school, you're also helping to make your community more accessible for others.
4. Teach Your Child Breathing Techniques
When you inhale, you give oxygen to your blood cells. When you exhale, you release carbon dioxide, which is a waste product. If you don't breathe properly, it can lead to anxiety and panic attacks.
Teach your child breathing techniques to cope with anxiety. The key is slow, deep, breaths that allow the brain to slow down.
5. Make Sure Your Child Gets Exercise
There's nothing quite like aerobic exercise for dealing with anxiety. This type of exercise decreases tension and improves mood. But it can also help with sleep and even self-esteem.
Just five minutes of aerobic exercise has these anti-anxiety effects. Try to get your child to exercise daily to help with their overall wellbeing and anxiety.
6. Make Sure Your Child Eats Well Balanced Meals
You are what you eat, and that's especially true if you're dealing with anxiety. A healthy and balanced diet contributes to better physical and mental health.
That means plenty of fruits and vegetables. But did you know that carbohydrates are also thought to increase serotonin?
7. Get Help When Help Is Needed to Ease Anxiety
You might try everything in your toolbox and your child still suffers from anxiety. In those cases, it might be time to consider outside help. Help might be anything from having your child see a counselor to taking medication.
More Information About Special Needs
The first step in learning how to ease anxiety in your child is knowing how to recognize it and have an open dialogue. That means talking to your child about their worries and fears and also sharing your child's needs with the school. But you can also help your child by teaching them breathing techniques, feeding them a healthy diet, and making sure they get exercise. And for more information about special needs, please visit our blog.
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