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childrens mental health

Supporting Children’s Mental Health: Some Tips for Caregivers

Spectrum Health’s Hannah Forysinski is a clinician who knows kids well! She’s assembed a top 10 list of tips for parents/caregivers that encourage mental wellness. 
  1. Be generous with praise and support that with verbal and physical touch.
  2. Discipline without labeling: don’t use words use such as “lazy,” “bad,” and “stupid.” Kids  want to be the apple of your eye!
  3. Don’t make them feel like a failure when they don’t do well: avoid comparing them to others.
  4. The power of positivity: teach optimism while still being realistic!
  5. Encourage physical activity, enough sleep, and a healthy diet.
  6. Be a positive role model: teach your child ways to relax that you can do together.
  7. Be present!  Spend time together!
  8. Keep a routine: kids thrive in structure!  Rules and boundaries keep everyone safe and happy.  It’s OK to adjust them as the child grows.
  9. Keep a line of honest communication open which includes talking about feelings regularly and doing “check-ins” with them.
  10. Watch for changes in behaviors and don’t be afraid to ask for professional help when you think something may be seriously wrong.  You know your child best afterall!  Spectrum Health has clinicians who help youth navigate their unique challenges. When youth are in crisis, our specially trained C.A.R.E.S. clinicians provide 24/7 crisis counseling to help your family when they need it the most.

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