The rise in anxiety, depression, and panic attacks in students today should give us pause. It isn’t limited by color, income, or location, gender, or ethnicities; all are experiencing angst. It’s unusual for employees to report young workers calling off work due to panic or anxiety attacks.
But why, and how, do we respond? As mentors and helping adults, we are actually in roles that can help reduce anxiety. One reason that youth are experiencing mental health challenges is a sedentary lifestyle! It’s no secret that we have a childhood obesity problem. Since the beginning of time, we have been wired for movement and sunlight. Continuous studies have shown that intentional physical movement significantly increases endorphins, which trigger positive feelings that combat depression and increase blood flow to the brain that also results in improved mood, boosting cognitive function. So as parents, helpers, and mentors, let’s get our kids moving as much as we can!
Next week I will discuss two other significant factors contributing to mental health challenges.