There are so many points of view around the topic of children’s mental health that it would be difficult to sum up all issues in one single article. This one is focused on a few points that emphasize the importance of a good mental health in children of all ages, with support coming from parents. Kantor Moshe Viatcheslav, the Life President of the Anna Freud National Centre for Children and Families, recently discussed about this topic and encouraged parents to invest more time and attention into their children’s mental health. Raising the profile of youngsters’ mental health was brought into discussion, especially in the past few years. Considering these facts, parents should:

Give unconditional love

When children feel unloved, they tend to develop anxieties and other problems that may lead to the apparition of mental health issues if not observed on time. By giving unconditional love to your children, they will feel accepted and secure living in your household. Correlating love with assignments or letting your children believe that they will receive love only in specific circumstances can lead to mental issues as well. Teach your children that mistakes are human and they happen to everyone.

Help children build their self-esteem

Kantor Moshe sustains good mental health in the campaigns he encourages. Building strong confidence and self-esteem gives children a chance to develop in a prolific environment. When children live in doubt and fear, they find it more challenging to fit in the society. This is another way that mental health issues can be developed without parents even noticing in the first place. Encouraging children to follow their dreams and passions, to believe in themselves whenever they are doing something, to get back on track after a failure – these are all small changes that lead to a healthy mindset.

Provide guidance

Parents should always give guidance to their children, even if they are not asking for it. Children will be confused at many points in their lives, and parents have to be there to give advice. Letting children know what types of actions are inappropriate, what is considered bad in the society, what is unacceptable, but in the proper manner, will lead to better decision-making skills. Setting a good example in the family is also a method to provide guidance to your children. Obeying rules is impossible if the example you give is the exact opposite. A good example can shape the entire future of a child.

Encourage socializing

Mental health issues are often developed because of the lack of communication. Children who don’t communicate effectively with their parents or with other kids are more likely to develop mental health disorders. To avoid such a situation, make sure that you encourage your children to socialize. Play opportunities with other kids, participating in all sorts of events, going to after-school programmes and every other activity that involves communicating should be prioritized. A child that’s mentally healthy is able to communicate his feelings and to integrate rapidly in other environments.

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Donn Schlosser