September is upon us and that means “back to school”! Despite the controversies, there is a desire to get back to a somewhat normal life, the need for children to see their friends again, the uncertainty that fuels the concerns of many parents, teachers and even some children and adolescents.
What will the game plan be? This is still uncertain... but in the meantime, there are some strategies that can be implemented to help manage the stress and anxiety generated by this back to school that is, let's face it, very different!
Transitioning with ease
If your child is anxious by nature, becomes more irritable as the beginning of the school year is approaching, develops stomach aches or headaches, has difficulty sleeping... these little tips could make the transition period easier for them and could result in a successful back to school.
1. A week before starting school, resume a bedtime routine and wake them up when they need to get up to go to class (or if applicable, for virtual class times).
2. Set aside time to spend together shopping for new school supplies and, as is often the case, new clothes. Give them the opportunity to make choices.
This preparation step is reassuring and reduces anxiety a notch!
As much as possible, be careful not to feed your child's anxiety with your own. While this is easier said than done, you need to learn to be tolerant of uncertainty and think positively.
Support the nervous system and the immune system
To optimize their physical and intellectual development, children must eat well, sleep well and develop an enthusiasm for physical activity.
For children and adults, when the nervous system is under tension, magnesium is the nutrient to favor. Stress depletes your stores of magnesium, this precious mineral that promotes relaxation.
For children, you have a choice of liquid, powder, or chewable tablet form. Seek advice from a naturopath or health consultants at TAU.
For children with ADHD, many studies report positive results with supplementation of magnesium (200 mg per day) and vitamin B6. Up to 95% of ADHD children are believed to be deficient in magnesium.
If needed, for faster action in the presence of anxiety and nervousness:
For children, L-Theanine, in the form of chewable tablets is very popular. Its action calms the mind without causing drowsiness. It increases alpha waves in the brain and increases the levels of certain calming neurotransmitters, including GABA.
For anxious, easily worried, anguished adults and adolescents, GABA can be taken as a supplement (capsules or chewable tablets). It provides rapid relief from angst, anxiety attacks and acute stress. It increases alpha waves associated with relaxation and reduces beta waves associated with stress and worry.
In the brain, everything is a matter of communication and since it has no reserves, it feeds on what the blood brings to it!
Too much sugar affects the balance of glucose in the blood and therefore ... the brain. It is known that after eating very sweet foods, a child is more excited, sometimes irritable and even aggressive!
For optimal health, provide a healthy and colorful diet daily, rich in antioxidants with fresh organic fruits and vegetables.
With a difficult child who refuses to eat a variety of foods, consider giving them a complete multivitamin and mineral, ideally sweetened with xylitol and/or stevia, with natural fruit flavors and colors.
More than 60% of the brain is made up of lipids, including the precious Omega-3s which are unfortunately often missing from children's diets.
Babies’ and children’s brains grow into adolescence and have the ability to use DHA omega-3s as a building material. It is therefore suggested to choose an Omega-3 formula more concentrated in DHA fatty acids to support communication in the brain whose billions of neurons are "chatting" with each other 24 hours a day!
To support immunity, consider probiotics:
It is estimated that 80% of the immune system is located on our gut lining and that there is a constant dialogue between the gut microbiota and the rest of the body.
For children 5 years and under, choose a formula adapted to their age with more bifidobacteria. After 5 years old, you can choose a plan that is suitable for the whole family.
The start of the "2020" school year represents a challenge that can be overcome. Hopefully these few tips will help you reduce anxiety and build resilience. Stay optimistic, it's good for your health!
TAU wants to be your partner in turning your health around. At TAU, we are attentive to your needs. TAU will accompany you in your approach and you will discover a variety of products and health food sources. Moreover, in TAU, you can still enjoy the sound advice of our naturopaths and our natural health counselors.