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What are some key supports for teen mental health and wellbeing?
Research has identified lots of different factors that can support resilience and wellbeing in teens during challenging times. There are a number of different areas where supports can have a positive impact:
Research consistently identifies good sleep as essential for wellbeing. Recent research has found that teens who were getting good sleep at night were less impacted by loneliness. Teenagers with autism or ADHD may benefit from extra support with sleep routines. You may listen to a Sleep Podcast for more information on identifying sleeping problems in your children, and easy steps to improve their sleep cycles and overall health.
Watch this space for additional sleep resources launching in October!
Staying active can help teens manage feelings of stress and supports their emotional wellbeing. Taking the time to head outside for a walk, run or ride each day will have positive impacts on their emotions and behaviour. Daily walks may also be a great time to practice mindfulness.
Healthy eating is linked with better mental wellbeing. Some young people may be picky eaters – for example, some teens with autism may avoid specific foods due to sensory sensitivities. If your child finds eating a range of healthy foods challenging, you can read more about how to support your child here or seek support from your child’s GP/paediatrician or allied health practitioners.
Warm and supportive parenting
Being available to talk to your teenager about emotions is also important. Research has consistently
shown that having caring and supportive caregivers can help young people thrive when faced with
adversities (including family financial stress, health challenges, and trauma). Your relationship with
your child can make a big difference, no matter what your family might be facing during this time.
Some teenagers may benefit from support with identifying, expressing and regulating their emotions. Families can use AllPlay Learn emotion cards, or you could practise mindfulness or relaxation breathing together. Experiencing difficulties when trying to solve a problem can often cause frustration or outbursts. Our problem-solving guide is a great tool for helping teenagers to understand their difficulties whilst brainstorming potential solutions.