How Stress Affects Kids Both at Home and in School
September 26, 2021
Stress is all around us and in our everyday lives. It can have very negative effects on our physical and emotional well-being. The past year has taught us all that stress can present itself in many different ways. Kids today are facing challenges in both their education and home life that were never anticipated. The unique circumstances of a once-in-a-lifetime pandemic combined with a lack of social interaction and new learning techniques have created new and potentially dangerous issues for young people to navigate.
Under the best of circumstances, high school can be a stressful time. The new Covid circumstances have elevated such things. In a recent study published on August 9th, 2021, in the JAMA Pediatrics Journal, researchers found that anxiety and depression nearly doubled in children during the pandemic. “We are experiencing a global public health crisis in youth mental health that began long before the pandemic, and we must advocate for the implementation of evidence-supported practice that is scalable, expands access to care, and eliminates disparities worldwide,” writes Tami D. Benton, MD.
Even before the pandemic, difficult situations at home were creating higher levels of anxiety and depression in children which in turn would lead to poor performance at school. An article titled Family Problems Affect Students’ Schooling states, “With divorced parents, you’re constantly worrying about it. It takes time out of your day. And having siblings live somewhere else is hard because you miss them.” Separation from loved ones, which can occur in divorced families is already very stressful. The pandemic made these family separations even more difficult as people were kept from seeing, not just immediate family due to quarantine, but also extended families, such as grandparents and close relatives and friends. This type of separation can cause great anxiety and uncertainty in young people.
Maya Flacon, the social and emotional counselor at SJHHS, states, “Not all divorces are negative. It depends on the adult. Parents shouldn’t involve the kids and should communicate with each other instead of communicating with the kids. Parents can overcome the negativity to create less stress for the kids.” To help with the amount of stress that’s happening, you should take breaks from everything around you and start taking care of yourself by talking to others. Try connecting with the community by helping out or doing charity work for the people who need it. If we all do our part we can help everyone lead happier and healthier lives.