Anxiety and Depression in Our Kids

What causes anxiety and depression in our kids and in us?

When it comes to anxiety and depression, their origins can be varied. These numerous causes can be internal and external (or endogenous and exogenous), or a combination of the two. Things such as genetics, unique brain wiring and environmental or situational experiences can all converge to create problems with mood management. Our thoughts have a HUGE impact on how we feel and our fast-paced life certainly contributes to it too, as can over-reliance on electronic devices and gaming systems.

We've pulled together a few tips to help you help your kids (or yourself) when it comes to better managing these runaway emotions. And I call them runaway emotions because they can seem to take on a life of their own. So, here we go:

Tips to Help

1. Don't Ruminate Over Things

Ruminating about situations, experiences or things that trouble us, add fuel to the anxiety/depression mix. Continuing to run them through out minds makes the worries or feelings of upset grow. If feelings run amok in your household at times, help your kids better deal with them with THIS.

2. Don't Let Things Rent Space in Your Head

Try not to let yesterday (or 10 minutes ago) take up too much of today. Another way to say that is, "Don't let it rent space in your head." Developing good thinking or cognitive strategies goes a long way towards squashing this major contributor to mood problems. This can help kids manage stress, as can this.

3. Free yourself up to enjoy every moment, as it comes.

Finding the good in each situation may seem like an oxymoron when times are bad, yet I challenge you to do so and teach your kids to do the same. If your family could use a little help, check this out for tips on building a calm family. This can help, too!

4. Practice mindfulness on a daily basis.

Mindfulness is not a "woo woo", "out-there" kind of concept. It's about staying anchored and present in our current reality. When we are able to do this, our happiness factor can increase tenfold or more. New to mindfulness? Start here!

When in Doubt

When in doubt, seek the support of a qualified and licensed mental health professional to help you or your child deal with mood issues.

How do you help your child manage BIG feelings? Let us know in the comments!

If you need resources to help you help your kids navigate the trickier, more challenging things in life...find help in our "Feelings Shop" of digital downloads at:


Wendy Young, LMSW, BCD, is  the founder of Kidlutions and co-author of BLOOM: 50 Things to Say, Think and Do with Anxious, Angry and Over-the-Top Kids. She is the creator of numerous workbooks and resources to help from the preschool through the teen years. Follow her on PinterestInstagramTwitter and Facebook! She'd love to see your smiling face there!


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