Gateway Gazette

How to Deal with Back-to-School Anxiety

Getting ready for a new school year can be exciting for parents, children, and caregivers alike. But it’s often also a cause of stress and anxiety because of the change in routine, increased responsibilities as well as new teachers, friends, and classes. And whether your kids are heading off to kindergarten, elementary school, high school or college, leaving the safety and familiarity of home can prompt feelings of fear.

88045bHAvoid feeling overwhelmed with these simple expert tips to relieve stress—they’re easy to follow and can be explained and practiced by parents and kids of all ages.

1. Schedule in “me time.” No matter how busy you are, make some time every day for something that brings you joy, even if the most you can squeeze in is 15 minutes. Read a book or gossip magazine. Watch silly cat videos on YouTube. Call your best friend for a good laugh. You’ll be surprised at the difference this small amount of dedicated time makes to your happiness and stress levels.

2. Take a deep breath. Many of us normally practice shallow “chest breathing,” which limits the diaphragm’s range of motion and decreases the amount of oxygenated air our lungs receive which can causes shortness of breath and anxiety. Deep “belly breathing” — when your stomach rises with each intake of air through your nose — ensures that each inhale fully fills your lungs with oxygenated air. Apart from increasing feelings of relaxation, deep breathing slows the heartbeat, decreases muscle tension, and lowers or stabilizes blood pressure.

3. Practice positive self-talk. Tell yourself you have enough time, patience, energy, and resources to tackle the school year ahead and any challenges it brings. Remind yourself of what really matters, and all the good things in your life.

4. Develop healthy habits. We all know the basics, but we can use a reminder from time to time —exercise to increase endorphins and feelings of well-being; eat a healthy, balanced diet; and make sure to get enough sleep.

5. Reach out if you need help. If you’re constantly feeling anxious or are having difficulty with your everyday activities, don’t be ashamed to voice your emotions and seek help from a loved one or healthcare professional. For a homeopathic solution, a medicine like Sédatil is effective in helping you and your body cope with stress and the side effects of physical and emotional tension including nervousness, hypersensitivity, and irritability. It’s also available in chewable tablets without a prescription.

88045aHKeep in mind these homeopathic medicines may not be right for everyone. Always read and follow the label.

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