Posted by ICON School on Apr 6, 2022 12:15:15 PM

It can be challenging for parents to know the best ways to help their teens cope with mental health struggles while attending an online school. While talking about mental health may be difficult, these conversations are important for helping your teen through these challenging times. You want to show your support so that your child knows you care and that you want to help them succeed. Here are some ways that you can help share support for your teen during their online school journey.

Understand Their Struggles

The first step for parents is to understand their teenager’s struggles. Remember back to your own teen experience and try to understand how the age of social media can impact mental health. As your teens enroll in an online school, the amount of time they stare at a computer will take up much of their days.

COVID-19 has revealed that excessive screen time affects people’s digital well-being, and you might even notice a change in your mental health with the increase of screens in your life. To have a meaningful conversation with your teen, you first need empathy for your teen’s experiences.

Encourage Conversation

Many teens want to speak up but feel their parents haven’t created a safe atmosphere to speak freely about the daily struggles they face. When a teen feels comfortable, you should allow them to talk whenever they’re having a tough time. Ask them about their mental well-being and how they’re handling online school. Whenever they speak about their health, validate their feelings and make sure they feel understood and encouraged.

As parents, sometimes we want to jump right in and try to solve the situation, but this can sound judgmental or dismissive if we aren’t careful. Instead, take the time to hear them out and empathize with their feelings. Some ways you can encourage conversation is to:

  • Unplug from what you’re doing

  • Listen to everything they say before responding

  • Acknowledge their struggles exist

Remember to be encouraging, and if you’ve had mental health battles in your own life, share any solutions that helped you.

Help Find a Solution

Be careful not to force a solution on your teen since there isn’t a one-size-fits-all solution to mental health struggles. The best way to find a helpful solution is to find the solution together. However, depending on their mental health, there may be situations when they aren’t looking for an answer at that very moment. They may need to chat a few times before you find the right answers.

If your student’s mental health stems from the challenges of an online school, you can discuss ways to change their online learning schedule to fit their needs. They may need to learn at different hours of the day, a different location in the house, or take more breaks during the day to spend outdoors.


Don’t Forget About You

When we strive to help others, we can form a habit of forgetting about ourselves. Whenever you hold in your mental health battles, you may unknowingly be teaching your children that they also have to. If your teens know that you also struggle, these conversations can bond you closer as you strive for positive mental health. Model self-care in ways like:

  • Having healthy eating habits

  • Implementing better sleep schedules

  • Socializing with others

  • Taking walks outside

  • Having time to relax

How we react to our struggles teaches our teens how they should respond. When you seek the self-care you need, we can help our teens cope with their mental health needs.


Conclusion

Mental health is a tough conversation to have, but a necessary talk that shows your teens that you love and care for their well-being. By creating an environment for them to chat about their health freely, you can have a closer bond with your teenagers as they learn in an online school. If your student needs help with their learning, please reach out to us for ways your student can adjust their learning style to fit their needs.

ICON School

Written by ICON School

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