Unpacked: How To Nurture Your Child’s Mental Health

August is Child Health Month, a time in which we discuss various issues affecting children and how we may best support them. We recognise the benefits of healthy habits as parents, and with mental health concerns in children on the rise, more parents are recognising the value of supporting and nurturing their children’s mental health. Here are some ways you can help your child:

Be intentional.

You can nurture your child by paying attention to his or her verbal and nonverbal cues. This will assist you in determining when your baby needs help or someone to talk to.

Balance closeness and fulfilment.

A positive relationship with your child is one of the most effective approaches to combat mental health challenges. Look for opportunities to lead with empathy. This can help in the development of a healthy relationship, making it simpler for your child to come to you when they have a problem.

Allow your child to experience failure.

As parents, we often desire to protect our children from heartbreak or disappointment. However, these experiences play an essential role in developing a child’s mental health. Remember that failure promotes growth, understanding, and even empathy.

As long as your child is safe, consider standing on the sidelines and being ready to support and encourage them when they need it the most, rather than fixing a problem as soon as it happens.

Encourage connections.

Social health is a vital part of our mental health. We are wired for communication. Building relationships teach us how to be better friends and essential social skills like reading and responding to nonverbal signs. This is beneficial for your child, so make sure they develop healthy social skills.

Model good behaviour.

Modelling healthy behaviour is one of the most important ways we can help our children’s mental health as parents. This includes being honest about your feelings without going into too much detail and showing how you recover from a mistake to show that you’re human too.

Make healthy choices.

We should continue to encourage healthy choices that benefit physical, emotional, and mental health, including:

  • Eating a healthy diet
  • Being physically active
  • Getting plenty of sleep
  • Teaching digital hygiene or responsible use of technology

Remember Choma, a strong foundation in childhood can lead to a healthy, happy, and productive child. Good mental health contributes to strong relationships and better health at home and school. Let’s nurture our babies👼🏽

If you or a friend need advice or help, you can contact me here on Ask Choma, send me a Facebook Message, an  Instagram message, a  Twitter DM, or a WhatsApp Message (071 172 3657).