Mental Health Tips

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Tips for Improving Your Family's Mental Health

August 19, 2021

How do you make sure you are raising healthy children and providing your family with the tools they need to maintain good mental health? We’ve outlined a few key mental health tips for families of young children, teens, and blended families. 

Mental Health Tips for Families with Young Children (Newborns to 12 years old)

At this stage, children are completely dependent on their parents. They are learning how to walk, speak, play, and are exploring the world around them.

Parents of children at this stage are developing a nurturing bond with their child. You become a trusted source for learning, support, and care. Make the most of this time together by following our tips below: 

  • Read and play with your child 
  • Prepare healthy meals
  • Make family dinner device-free
  • Watch movies or play games together 
  • Establish family traditions like cooking together and decorating for the holidays
  • Explore your creativity and color, paint, or draw together
  • Turn off your devices and go outdoors
  • Teach your child about expressing gratitude
  • Check-in with your child daily

Mental Health Tips for Families with Teens (13 to 18 years old)

Children at this stage are trying to find themselves and gain independence. Life might feel busier because of extracurricular activities, like sports or theater, and your child will have new friends and may even begin dating.

With so much change, tension and conflict between parents and their teens is a  common part of life. At this stage, family support is crucial. As a parent, you can set a healthy example by showing your teen how to regulate their emotions and handle disagreements. Remember, you are a trusted resource for them.

To maintain your family’s mental health, remember to keep up with the mental health tips above, and: 

  • Care for your physical health by exercising, going on walks, or taking a bike ride
  • Maintain a healthy sleep schedule
  • Limit social media and cellphone use
  • Keep an open line of communication, share your feelings, and talk about what is happening in your lives
  • Explore new places together
  • Have family meetings when problems or concerns arise
  • Speak with a mental health professional if you notice the signs and symptoms of depression, anxiety, or other mental illnesses

Mental Health Tips for Blended Families with Adopted Children, Foster Children, and More

Blended families have unique challenges. Both parents and children need time to adjust to their new lives, whether mentally, physically or emotionally. Spending time together while creating a space where family members can feel comfortable and accepted can help ease the transition. 

To improve your family’s mental health, remember to keep up with the mental health tips above, and:

  • Treat all of your children as members of the family and avoid terms like “step-child,” “half-sister,” or “adopted brother”
  • Speak with a family therapist to address unresolved conflict or if a member of your family is struggling with this new transition
  • Communicate regularly and always with respect
  • Schedule family days at the park, a museum, or at a concert to get to know your children better
  • Consider joining a support group for blended families to find support from parents with common experiences

Life is busy and it’s important to make time to care for the mental health of your loved ones and yourself. Try these mental health tips at home and create healthy routines with your family. By improving your family’s mental health, life can be more enjoyable in the long run. 

Not sure where to start? Search for mental health services in Osceola County.

Take the pledge to check-in and start the mental health conversation with your family.

The Check-In Project is a mental health initiative of Wraparound Osceola, working to break the stigma surrounding mental health. Our goal is to provide families with the tools and resources needed to check-in with each other while fostering healthy family life.

Email: info@thecheckinproject.ORG// Phone: 407-870-4897