Children have been experiencing a tidal wave of emotions since these recent unsettling times. Our children’s routines have been altered and they may not understand why. They haven’t been able to see their family or friends. They may feel unsettled tension in the household. Ultimately, children are stressed. Children’s emotional health are growing and evolving. Many times they don’t have the words, resources or understanding to express what they are feeling. If you are feeling at a loss of how to support your children, consider these 10 natural principles/tools to support them during these difficult times .
- Check in with yourself. Our children are very sensitive to their parents. They can feel the emotions and stress from their parents without understand what they are feeling. I often recommend parents to do many of the following suggestions for themselves in order to help their child too. Stressed parents can lead to stressed children.
- Spend solo time with your children to talk. This can include going for a walk, working in the garden or making dinner. Spend time together to be present. Our worlds are always so busy. Occasionally we miss some of their cues.
- Have them journal or draw. The old idea of a diary can be helpful. Let them get their ideas out. If they want to share, that is even better.
- Stomach pain. Often children will describe stomach pain when they feel worried, scared or stressed. The sensation of “butterflies” will seem like stomach pain. Abdominal massage can be helpful. A gentle clockwise massage on the abdomen can stimulate movement and general calmness.
- Go outside. Our children spend an exceptional time indoors using electronics. The ElectroMagnetic Frequencies from iPads, televisions and computers can be depleting physically and emotionally. Vitamin D production via sun exposure is a definite mood enhancer too. Don’t forget the Sun Protection!
- Exercise. Endorphin production is a wonderful mood stabilizer. American children do not experience enough exercise. This leads to obesity which could lead to hormone imbalances.
- Play in the dirt. Connecting with the earth is energetic neutralizing. Let them run around bare foot when available. Also, there are billions of beneficial microbs in the dirt. These microbs can help populate the gut with probiotics and essential fatty acids through general childhood play.
- Weighted blankets. Steady light weighted blankets stimulate the body to produce the feel good hormone, Serotonin. Using a weighted blanket for rest, can encourage calmness and better sleep. The general rule for which blanket to use with your child is 10% of their body weight plus one pound. My children are 50 pounds. Therefore, their blankets are 6 pounds each. Mine is much more.
- Deep touch pressure. Much like the weighted blanket, heavy compression can stimulate Serotonin release. Serotonin reduces stress and anxiety. In order to do this, you will apply steady firm pressure down onto the limbs, hips, chest and shoulders. There is no stroking or movement with the application. You will just compress, release and then move to another location. Please use discretion based on the age and size of the willing partner. Also, the joints of the legs and arms can be lightly compressed together.
- Get CranioSacral Therapy! CranioSacral Therapy is sublime to help down-regulate the nervous system. It is very calming and grounding. Children and adults can benefit!
Our children are growing and evolving physically and emotionally. Sometimes the world around them can be hard to handle. We can try several tools in our homes to help them to grow to be the best that they can be.