The COVID-19 pandemic left many people with intensified mental health struggles. With that said, mental health awareness is at an all-time high as parents pay close attention to their child’s mental health and any struggles that they might be going through.
Younger children, in particular, were hit hard after being pulled out of traditional school for at least one calendar year. It left parents looking for answers to keep their teenagers engaged and connected in various ways.
Limiting seeing peers in person during the pandemic caused a lot of socializing struggles, which is crucial to teens’ growth.
How can parents help their teens with mental health struggles? It’s not always an easy process, but starting with a conversation is a great first step. Let’s look into what options are available for teens, like the Trails Carolina Wilderness Therapy Program.
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Talking About Mental Health Struggles
A conversation on mental health may initially take people out of their comfort zone. However, it can do a ton of good in helping teenagers get the answers they need. Opening up with some simple, basic talk shows that the support is there.
How is it possible to start this conversation? While there are ways to do preventative mental health struggle talks, most parents wait to see any warning signs of mental health disorders coming from their child. If there are any severe changes when it comes to eating, sleeping, language, or other day-to-day activities, it’s worth bringing up.
If warning signs exist, it’s best to engage in a conversation sooner rather than later. Showing compassion and listening will help then know that they are not alone. Being a good role model as much as possible can show them that it’s easy to approach regarding struggles or challenges.
Make sure to actively listen to their struggles by validating emotions. Teens can become vulnerable when sharing information during a conversation and want to be genuinely heard. They’ll be able to pick on whether or not a parent is listening and wanting to help. Too many go through the motions without getting the help they need.
More Mental Health Help
Beyond a simple talk to raise awareness of mental health struggles, there are some steps families can take to make improvements. They are all fairly simple, but they can make a difference.
Start with something subtle, focusing more on sleep habits, nutrition, and fitness. Making some subtle changes here can do a lot towards improving mental health.
Sleep habits might seem challenging to change, but a lot can be done simply by eliminating bad habits like falling asleep with the TV on, laying in bed with a phone or laptop nearby as a distraction, or being connected to other forms of technology.
Shutting everything off and focusing on sleep can lead to better rest.
Nutritional changes don’t have to be drastic, but cutting out one or two bad things can make a difference. An example is to cut out soda from a diet but keep everything else the same. If teenagers drink too much soda, that change will significantly reduce sugar and caffeine intake.
Getting out and staying active can greatly increase someone’s mental health. Staying active doesn’t mean you need to sign up for a marathon; it can start with a simple walk that gets your heart rate going.
There are so many different ways to get exercise, and most teenagers find something that works for them.
Spending Time With Friends and Loved Ones
Another way to help your teen’s mental health is to help them spend time with friends and people who really care about them. Socializing with people who are there for you can significantly help people have a better perspective on life.
While socializing with these people, they can give them life advice and connect in ways that help them understand that they aren’t alone in their struggles—connecting with someone struggling with mental health can also help.
Professional assistance is always there for teenagers struggling with mental health and not showing any improvements. While some might be nervous about spending too much visiting a mental health professional, affordable options exist.
Some mental health professionals offer discounted rates based on income. There’s also the option of going with video therapy, which can be cheaper than an office visit.
Let’s look at what wilderness therapy programs like Trails Carolina can offer.
Trails Carolina Wilderness Therapy
According to the statistics, Wilderness Therapy can help a lot with teenagers’ mental health struggles. That’s why Trails Carolina has been able to find so much success in helping build up a teenager’s confidence.
Trails Carolina uses clinically proven services that work for various mental health issues, and utilizing a unique wilderness setting gives teenagers time to work on what they need. The setting makes a huge difference allowing students to focus on what they need to do individually to improve.
The focus is on improving more than just a teenager’s mental health at Trails Carolina. There’s also a focus on lasting change by helping families back home strengthen relationships with their teens.
Wilderness Therapy programs are nothing new, and Trails Carolina continues to rate highly in this category.
Why a Little Help Makes a Huge Difference with Mental Health.
Ignoring minor mental health red flags can lead to more significant problems. It’s best to address anything quickly and prevent it from getting worse.
Parents have more resources than ever to be educated on basic mental health awareness. While it can sometimes seem overbearing, other resources like Trails Carolina can help significantly.