Teens and Stress At  School
Three Tips for Parents

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Teens and stress at school is a challenge that occurs sometime throughout the school year.  It is especially intense when a new school year begins.  The beginning of a school year ushers in an opportunity for a fresh start—new clothes, new makeovers, and maybe even some new friends.  Your teen may be interested in polishing her image, improve her grades and boost her self esteem.  This is a busy time for teens, and stress often increases along with the increase in activities.



During these teen years, peer pressure may be intense with the media blasting messages about how to look, how to feel, and ways to keep up with changing trends.  Don’t be surprised if your teen suddenly decides she needs a new makeover, needs a new boyfriend or wants to create a new wardrobe.  The media on television, in the magazines and on the internet are all suggesting these ideas. 

Are you surprised that teens and stress are intertwined?  How can parents help with teens handle to start of a new school year without stress overload?

Create a comfortable and safe home.

Life at school can be crazy for teens.  The drama in the cafeteria alone can be worthy of a soap-opera.  Maybe something embarrassing happened in a class, or she tripped in the hallway, or had a fight with her best friend.  Any number of things can turn into a crisis for teens.  Having a safe haven to escape from these pressures helps a lot to restore balance in your teen’s life.  Providing an environment where teens can act naturally without worrying about peer pressure, and can reflect on the day’s events can help them gain a healthy perspective. 

Be the adult you want your teen to become.

Part of growing up is learning how to get along with others.  The social aspects of life can be difficult to master for teens.  Stress increases during times of uncertainty.  Making time to talk over the day and offer advice—if asked for—can help a lot for your teens.  Be a role model.  Show in actions, how you treat others fairly and with respect.  Talk about how to handle conflicts with a best friend, or how to put into perspective not being chosen for the school play or sports team.  Being there willing to listen can provide a great amount of comfort for teens and stress levels drop as they feel your support.

Celebrate your teen’s unique talents.

Helping teens identify and hone their talents is exciting.  Each kid is so different and during these teen years, they may be nervous about deciding what they want to do or be when they grow up.  Having a clear sense of identity helps create positive self esteem for your teens and stress reduces as a result.  There is a valuable life lesson during these teen years.  If your teen can be proud of her own abilities and talents then she can stop worrying about trying to fit in with everyone else’s expectations.

Teens and stress will always be a topic of discussion for parents, but finding ways to make these years less filled with turmoil will lower the likelihood of emotional outbursts and help teens be more comfortable with who they are in their own skin.

Stress Management for Students

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