Stress is the reaction of our minds and bodies to unsettling experiences. Too much stress can have negative consequences and can even make us ill.
For this reason, the things that cause stress in children should be taken seriously before they become a serious problem.
What are the signs of a distressed child?
- Anger, aggressiveness, anxiety, crankiness, bedwetting.
- Crying too easily, overeating, increased clumsiness, hair twisting, teeth clenching.
- Fighting with other children, or withdrawing from them.
- Failing at school.
Causes of stress can lurk anywhere. They include pressure from home or school, such as being too busy with overloaded schedules.
Family changes such as divorce or remarriage can also be a cause, along with feeling unloved or misunderstood.
Children cannot analyze events that cause stress – or control their reactions to those events – as well as adults can, so they do need guidance from adults.
Family support is a vital antidote to stress, so be sure create time to relax and talk together.
Curb access to violent TV shows and movies. Keep daily life calm. A pet can be a good buffer and an emotional refuge.
Relaxed parents, who cope positively with their own stress, pass on these skills to children. It’s also helpful to maintain a network of friends and activities outside the home.
This type of support and acceptance plays a very helpful role.