Tips for Parents: How to Check Your Child’s Mental Health Daily – Health Shots | Wonder Mind Kids

Children, like any adult, also experience mental health problems. And a child’s mental health is just as crucial as their physical health, especially when it comes to dealing with stress, behavior and school. Regular psychiatric check-ins are a quick way to assess how children are feeling in everyday life and when faced with challenges. As a parent or teacher, you may be wondering how to check a child’s mental health on a daily basis. Let us help you on this journey.

The key role of parents and adults in a child’s life is to create a positive environment and engage in open conversations in the home. This allows children to feel safe and comfortable sharing their emotions, friendships, goals, opinions, and difficulties without feeling unheard or afraid of their parents’ reactions.

It is crucial for every child to have at least one adult by their side with whom they can share their feelings and struggles and also feel safe with them.

Mental health problems in children: signs to look out for

If your child is exhibiting any of the following symptoms, it’s time to start a conversation or seek professional help. Check these mental health problems in children!

isolation

Children may begin to withdraw from or actively avoid social situations.

If you notice that your child is constantly trying to distance himself from family and friends, avoiding previously popular outdoor spots, staying aloof and alone most of the time, it is advisable that you make an effort to talk and trust him build up by creating a sense of closeness, safety and security.

If your child is self-isolating, that’s a sign. Image courtesy: Shutterstock

fear

If your child looks overly worried and feels stressed, mostly lost in thought, or anxious and anxious, it means they are having trouble managing their feelings.

irritability

Extreme irritability or out-of-control behavior should be an alarm. Your child may show anger all the time or hit on each other frequently in family interactions. Use a direct and calm communication style during this time.

mood swings

Marked changes in mood or personality can be an important sign. You may notice drastic changes in their communication style. You can either talk too little or too much. You may also notice changes in sleeping habits or eating habits and also frequent emotional mood swings.

Little concentration

They may notice drastic changes in their academic performance, or they may have trouble completing assignments, become anxious before exams, or be overly concerned about grades.

Important for mental health in children
Check if your child lacks focus or interest in creative pursuits. Image courtesy: Shutterstock

physical changes

If you find that your child is wetting the bed or sucking their thumb, suffers from frequent stomachaches or headaches, or complains of multiple physical ailments, then seek help from a professional.

Also, contact a mental health provider immediately if you notice your child engaging in destructive or self-harming behavior. Cutting, scratching, social fighting or aggressive outbursts, or the use of drugs, alcohol, over-the-counter medications, etc. are all issues in a child’s mental health.

Difficulty expressing or communicating their feelings

Your child may start avoiding conversation or cry or get angry when asked about their feelings. During these difficult times, talk to them about their feelings and encourage them to identify and name their feelings.

Also Read: Is Your Child Aggressive? 9 practical tips to deal with it

10 questions for the mental health check-in with your child

A good way to understand and examine these behavioral patterns would be to ask specific questions.

1. What has been stressing you out lately?

Give them time to respond to what’s bothering them. They may not always respond because they don’t want to feel judged or criticized.

2. What exciting things are you looking forward to?

Most children who suffer from depression do not look forward to the future or have any hope.

communication with children
Keep communication channels with children open and friendly. Courtesy of Shutterstock

3. Do you find academics difficult?

Listen and acknowledge that they may be feeling stressed by the academic demands and the need to do well.

4. Do you feel like you are dealing with too much?

Help them by sharing examples of how you, too, feel overwhelmed when you’re busy and how you try to cope. Guide them and give them personal strategies and help them find solutions too.

5. Who do you miss the most right now?

Many children have lost a family member for various reasons. It’s okay to talk to them about bereavement and to share memories of the deceased.

6. How can I help you?

Do not take their rudeness or harsh communication at face value. Try to be patient and listen to them when they say they don’t want to be scolded, judged, or lectured on. Avoid doing the same and praise them for what they are doing right and give them time and support to change and be more confident.

7. Tell me something you are afraid of.

Check their concerns and how they are feeling. Guide them on how to worry and deal with it too.

8. Have you ever felt so sad or lonely that you wanted to hurt yourself?

Try to check if children have felt the need to hurt themselves directly by cutting or injuring themselves or by hitting a wall and banging on non-living things. Help them learn emotional regulation through communication. Also let them know that you will listen and try to understand what they are going through without judging them.

Meditate for children
Make sure your child indulges in physical and mental health activities. Image courtesy: Shutterstock

9. What do you need right now that you don’t have?

As children, they can share what they need in order to overcome some problems or problems they may be facing. Listen patiently to what they might ask you so you can help them too.

10. How are things going with your friends? Can you still speak to them or see them?

Peer relationships are most important to them. Any change in these friendships is a drain on children. Try to encourage them to overcome these kinds of difficulties with your guidance but no direct solutions. That’s because, as a parent, you want your kids to find resources to help them cope with the problems as well.

Also, try to create a safe place for them and be their support system so your kids know they have a pillow if they fall and get picked up by their parents. Remember that you can play a key role in your child’s mental health.

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