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Friday, January 8, 2010

Child Stress Management Without Stressful Parenting

Parents' child related stress extends to coping with children's. Child stress is very common.

Pregnancy rates high on the official stress-scale and mothers sometimes suffer also 'baby blues'. But, also, parents have to be alert to child stress symptoms and cope with their children’s stress –as well as to avoid becoming stressful themselves in doing so. This is common in parenting.

Parents did not use to have advice on child stress. National and international help and guidance to parents in child rearing and welfare only became available after the second world war. Parts of Africa and Asia entered the 21st century with help mostly, often only, from religious and charitable organizations. In western countries the UNICEF’s international efforts only gained generality in practice in the 1950s (when it was first theorised by Selye as the body’s [i.e., physiological] reaction when threat or danger is felt -a general adaptation syndrome which exceptionally at its most extreme is capable of leading to a nervous breakdown). There had not been any parenting advice on child stress. The parents' job in dealing with child stress is not easy.

>>This is the gist of the generally agreed suggestions on child stress which may help...

A baby is born with fears: fear of falling and fear of noise. A child, right from the beginning, is susceptible to stress in those respects. This continues until the baby gets generally used to noise and learns to walk.

Young children may not have the vocabulary to express their fears. Teenagers feel misunderstood or have other sounding boards. In parenting these make a child’s stress, or the symptoms of child stress, difficult to notice.

Additionally, some child stress symptoms are unrecognisably mild.

Stress is caused, mostly, by a feeling of being unable to cope. This is so also in child stress. This feeling often arises from a situation the child is not used to and develops into child stress. Assure stressed children, and help.

Mild child stress also has symptoms. It may be in the form of irritability or mood changes on the part of the child. This may indicate lack of protein or carbohydrates (potatoes, pulses, sugar -fruits). Lack of these often causes mild stress. A stressed child may be lacking those.

Withdrawal indicates severe child stress. The stressed child may be being bullied.

Child stress symptoms vary as the child grows up. Being difficult indicates unsatisfied creativity. Enable difficult children creativity. Obsession or compulsion often is a guilt feeling. It may tempt to guilt transference. Suggest symbolic gestures, deeds to rid of it. These kinds of child stress are more suffered by children after they cease to be babies.

Babies dislike being alone and my suffer child stress. Be within sight as their protector.

Similarly, it causes the younger child stress if the child is alone in an unfamiliar environment. Accompany a young child to a new environment. Stay with the child, if possible, at first until the child is reasonably familiar with it.

Children’s fear of the dark is because one can best concentrate then. The child's imagination comes into play about a horror movie or scary story. Teach the child to slightly open his eyes and concentrate on something in the bedroom. A night light helps reduce such child stress.

If separation or re-marriage has taken place, that may be the cause of the child’s stress surfacing in the form of fear of the dark. Talk to the child, explain, assure.

(But, if the child says that he can't see well enough in the dark, it may be night blindness often caused by vitamin 'A' deficiency [eggs, cheese, whole milk -or cooked carrots]).

Also pubescence related guilt can cause child stress. Assure the child that it is normal and part of growing up.

Many teenagers suffer from child stress. Be a good listener to the teenager sufferers of stress. Show that you do understand. Don't talk down, do not make light of teenagers’ dating problems. Teenagers like to be taken seriously and to be trusted.

Child stress is caused, both, the younger children and the teenagers also by what they regard as failure. On achievement oriented tasks, it is important in parenting to ensure to explain a child or that it is okay to try again.

These are the views of the experts on child stress. In parenting bear them in mind.

>>Coping with child stress may cause stress also to parents. Parents can not as easily cope with their children suffering from child stress if they themselves become stress sufferers.

Experts’ advice in parenting on easier coping with child stress is this: The adults raising children, first, should try to avoid stress for themselves. In parenting, especially if already having to cope with child stress, do rest. If at home, rest mid-morning. If you are at home and parenting young children, you should rest also for half an hour after lunch, or an hour before children return home.

If you cannot cope well, or if child stress appears severe, do consult a parenting or child stress expert.

Child stress is often contributed to because the parents ‘don’t understand’ the child. Don’t simply criticise or forbid children. Explain. Make allowance for the child’s age. Do not assume that having told the child ‘a million times’ the child necessarily understood or even that can, yet, understand what an adult can. It may lessen a child’s stress sometimes for parents to recall their own childhood...

(Verse by teacher the late Orhan Seyfi Ari...)

"Sometimes such fools we were, sometimes smart kids

Sometimes Satan's tools, sometimes with saintly deeds"

A site with also views on educational parenting of hailed Teacher Ari

The author's favourite site is: Teacher of Teachers

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