Back to school sparks new stress

Back to school.

Those three words can instantaneously agitate your child. Saying goodbye to summer and getting back to the books can be a tough transition time for students. The toll is often displayed in your child's emotions. The worry begins to pile up as the first day of school draws near.

Jayne Bordelon is the executive director at Mental Health America of Southeast Texas. She says the stress of meeting a new teacher, having more homework, or even leaving mom for a longer period of time, are all concerns students experience.

Staying organized and reassuring them can show you stand in support of your child. Ask them to tell you about the good and the bad in their day. While change is often met with nervousness, Bordelon says when your child gets to a hopeless state then it's time to read into the change. If you notice major differences in your child's behavior you should take action. Knowing your child's mental health status is just as important as knowing their physical condition.

"If your child... says things like 'I can't take this any more,' 'My life is not worth living,' ... when you see this deep type of depression in your child or in an adult... that could be signs of someone who is potentially suicidal," said Bordelon.

Bordelon says if your child shows sadness for more than two weeks, it could be time to seek counseling. She says depression is an illness and a child should not be ashamed to ask for help.

"We don't want to lose one more life in our community to someone who feels like they can't live, they can't go on, [or] nothing can be resolved. So it's important we recognize these signs," said Bordelon.

The Spindletop center is a state funded agency that offers a variety of services including mental health evaluations for children and adults.

Bordelon also recommends exploring for additional resources and information.


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