Post Pandemic, 5 Signs Of Mental Health Issues In School Kids We Need To Be Alert For

During puberty, your child may go through emotional changes ranging from strong to intense. It is very common for the child to feel overwhelmed by sudden mood swings.

Trigger Warning: This deals with depression, anxiety, and suicidal themes, and may be triggering to survivors.

In 2022, the new academic year started with some relief. Schools have reopened, and the successful passing of quarterly sessions of the academic has induced hope in parents.

After two years of online school and activities, offline school had brought a sense of hope among teachers too. But what about the students? Are they really coping up with the situation? Are we as a parent, teachers or any grown-up adult, really aware of the mental health of kids and teens?

Some time ago, I read the news about a student jumping from the school terrace. The child died on the spot. Further details revealed, the child who was merely 14, was going through stress and anxiety. The parents of the deceased child till then were not aware of her condition.

Is this just an isolated incident? No!

According to the recent survey by NCRB there is a tremendous increase in teen suicide cases in India. Maharashtra tops the list followed by Madhya Pradesh and Tamil Nadu.

What makes our children take this drastic step? As a parent have, we ever pondered over this question? It has become mandatory for parents, teachers and guardians of a child to keep a keen eye on not just the academic growth but also on their much-needed health.

It is essential to watch out for these 5 signs and symptoms in your teens.

Emotional changes are not tantrums!

During puberty, your child may go through emotional changes ranging from strong to intense. It is very common for the child to feel overwhelmed by sudden mood swings. All these combined with peer pressure at school leads to a sudden emotional change, towards everything.

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Give your child much-required space and encourage a positive thinking attitude. Don’t allow them to buckle down at any peer pressure.

Handle physical changes positively

Teenage is when your child starts developing physical changes. Though the process may be normal, the psychological effects on them cannot be ignored.

Teens during this phase are quite sensitive and may worry about sudden changes in physical appearance. These sometimes prompt them for unnecessary body comparisons with their peers.

I was shocked when my tween daughter one day came up to me with a body shaming incident at school. I spoke to her, discussing positive thoughts and discouraged her to give in to such talk, even if they are her friends. But at the back of my mind, I was surprised by these preconceived ideas of ‘beauty’ that our teens carry in their minds. Where did they learn these mindsets?

Help your child to understand the changes happening in their body. Motivate them to stay healthy, and love the way they are!

‘Panic attacks’ are real!

Panic attacks in teens are on the surge these days. The reason has been the tremendous stress and peer pressure.

Difficulty in coping up with the competition to stay atop in everything leads to tremendous pressure, that results in panic attack. Family background, childhood trauma, trauma caused by some particular incident and any underlying mental illness can also be a reason. However, a child has a sudden bout of attack shouldn’t be taken lightly at any cost. Consult a professional at the very first sign!

All social awkwardness is not a result of being an introvert

Adolescents either spend less time with family and engage more with friend circles or tend to be socially shy with no friends.

A recent study claims that more and more teenagers live inside social media and look there for validation, rather than from the real world. And this can become an even more alarming situation in the coming years.

Spend quality time with your growing child. Teenagers require as much as possible of your undivided attention. Keep some rules of spending time together – like eating together, reading time with family or planning weekend trips with them. Remember to spend this time together with a “no phone” rule!

Sleep disturbance can be worse

Even though stress and anxiety are the cause of most sleep issues, sometimes academic pressure, peer pressure and competition can also lead to sleep disorders in teens. Late nights and social media influence can play a catalyst to the aforesaid condition.

If your child is going through a sleep issue, try to figure out the reason. Talk to them and help them set a sleep routine. Ask them to read their favorite story before bed. Or encourage them to do journaling. Journaling is one of the best and the cheapest therapy we have today!

It’s important to notice anxiety signs in their initial stages to counter them through therapy as early as possible. Parents, teachers, family members, and those close to our teens, it’s important to create a safe space and help them overcome this problem. And it all starts with knowing the signs of anxiety.

If you or anyone you know is feeling depressed or suicidal, here are some of the helplines available in India. Please call. 
Aasra, Mumbai: 022-27546669
Sneha, Chennai: 044-2464 0050
Lifeline, Kolkata: 033-2474 4704
Sahai, Bangalore: 080-25497777
Roshni, Hyderabad: 040-66202000, 040-66202001
SPEAK2us – Tamilnadu 9375493754

Image source: shutterstock

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About the Author

Sheeba Vinay

Sheeba Vinay is a writer, Compiler by profession. She is criminologist and a writing therapist. Her write-ups have been published in Lokmat Times, TOI and various platforms like Women's Web, Momspresso, Storymirror, India read more...

23 Posts | 48,563 Views

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