How to teach children self care.

By Camille Pierson

According to some very sad statistics from the World Health Organisation, one in four adults in the world will experience mental health problems.  75% of those people will have problems which start before they turn 18. In fact, one in ten children in the UK have issues with their mental health so we started to think about what we could do to help.  We thought about the fact that we teach our children how to look after themselves in physical ways like cleaning their teeth or preparing good food to feed themselves properly but we don’t always teach children how to look after their mental health. Camille looked into this and came up with some simple techniques she could use with her children to help support their mental wellbeing.  She calls them the three Bs.

Bath time

Sleep is so important for children’s mental and physical health and we all know that a good relaxing bedtime routine is essential for helping young children sleep.  It seems odd then that one of the last things we do before bed is have a hyperactive loud and crazy bath time where there are toys and splashing and all round chaos.  Camille has put a stop to this in her house by introducing a calm bath time which involved getting rid of the toys, adding Epsom Salts and essential oils and creating a positive calm atmosphere.  Instead of playing with toys and splashing about, her children talk calmly about something positive that happened during the day.  This helps the children to relax and makes getting to sleep easier.

Be Positive Jar

Being positive and speaking to children in a calm and positive way constantly is impossible.  We all have hard days that make us down and snappy towards others.  For when this happens, Camille has a ‘Be Positive Jar’ where members of the family write positive comments about each other and then take them out and read them to each other when they are feeling negative or stressed.

Breathing

When kids, and adults, are stressed and/or angry, the least calming thing you can do to them is to tell them to calm down.  There’s nothing that winds people up more than being told to calm down so Camille has found a better way to help her children feel calm.  As her kids love doing yoga with her, she uses a yoga-inspired breathing exercise which they all do together either sitting down or lying down. It’s very simple.  All they do is take eight deep breaths as slowly as they can. Everyone feels much calmer afterwards.

These are just a few simple techniques to allow parents to help kids support their mental health now and for the future.  Openness and active listening are even more important qualities for parents to nurture in their family to support children’s mental health as making children feel loved, supported and listened to is vital.  Parents mustn’t forget that they also need to look after their own mental wellbeing to enable them to best support their children.  We’re all about supporting mental health here at The Float Spa so please feel free to call us on 01273 933 680 if you want any advice on how our services can help yours or your children’s mental health.

About the Author:

Camille Pierson
Camille is the managing director of the Float Spa and a Trustee of the Brighton Yoga Foundation. She’s immensely proud of the community she’s built at the float spa and takes real pleasure from seeing yoga & floating transform people’s lives. She’s also a mother of two.

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