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STRESS IN CHILDREN - Mrs. Brinda Jaisingh


Stress is a part and parcel of everyday life, it has assumed a new dimension in today's time with competition and parental pressures. Sometimes parents notice their children reacting, snapping, angry, nervous, unable to sleep, depressed, violent and very irritable.


Very often parents term it as "teenage blues". However, many a times its the stress working them up. Earlier, it was unheard of children being stressed, but nowadays with stiff competition and parental expectation teenagers do suffer from stress.

Very often, it is normal well adjusted families of today, who are witnessing stress amongst their children. Unable to cope with pressure of studies, aggressive peer pressure, parental expectation, divorce or death in family teenagers send out SOS (signals of stress).

Causes of Stress

a.

Adolescent is a stage where there is physical and emotional change taking place. They become extremely self conscious during this period. They are apt to be touchy, easily hurt when criticized. At one moment they feel grown up and want to be treated as such. The next moment they feel like children and expect to be cared for.

b.

At times, they feel pressured from friends. They have an intense need to be just like their friends and to be totally accepted by their friend. They fear that they could face ridicule and rejection from friends.

c.

Sometimes, a child stretches himself, beyond his limits in his studies. The net result being that he cannot handle the pressure of studies and experiences failure. The fear of disappointment to his parents leads to stress. Parents, who set very high unreasonable goals, unnecessarily make their children go through a lot of mental stress and pressure.

d.

Competition is another reason for stress. Whether its an exam or an elocution contest or a tennis game, winning is what really matters this puts tremendous pressure on the child.

How to cope with stress ? Strategies for parents

a.

You could reassure your child. You could teach your child that "failures are stepping stones to success". Falling short on a goal does not mean falling short as a person.

b.

Teach your child to cope with stress, by building his self esteem. Fostering courage, nobility will instill in him, the feeling that he is capable of coping with any problem.

c.

Keep a happy atmosphere at home. A happy interaction with parents keep the warmth alive in the family. They learn to respect their parents.

d.

Let your child make his own decision. Guide him, but leave the final decision onto him. Help him focus and stand by him.

e.

Help your child envisage a better tomorrow, no matter how stressful the present situation may be. This could be done by means of good communication.

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