It's hard to believe that school is already in full swing! Fresh new school supplies, dusting off the old tablet, seeing old friends and making new ones are some great positives for students returning to school. There are also the early mornings, long days and navigating treacherous social circles.

We are here to help! At MLRA, we work with students ages five and up to address transitions, attention issues, social/emotional wellness and behavioral challenges. Whether you are a parent or teacher (or both), seeking support from your local mental health resources is one way to get off to a great start..

Here are a few back to school tips we give our child/adolescent clients:

  1. Talk to your parents - share what you feel and think.
  2. Breathe - especially if you are anxious about getting to school.
  3. Talk to your teacher - be sure that your teacher knows if you are feeling anxious or over-worried.
  4. Learn to self-soothe - color, draw, play games, read, be active.
  5. Follow what your parents identify as your schedule/routine.
  6. Sleep! You will feel better and more alert during the day.
  7. Eat! Make sure to have breakfast - it starts your day on the right foot.

Here are a few back to school tips for teachers and parents:

  1. Take care of yourself - get plenty of sleep, eat regularly, exercise
  2. Work with your child to put in place a schedule/routine, and stick to it
  3. Be open to listening to your child - give them a safe place to talk about worries, anxiety
  4. Coordinate with your child's care team - include pediatricians, psychiatrists, counselors, school social workers, teachers, etc. in making sure a game plan is in place to help support your child
  5. Set rules and expectations clearly and follow through on them

Remember, patience, self-care and boundary setting can go a long way in the transition from Summer to School. We encourage everyone to seek out  and use healthy coping skills to deal with distress and change. You've got this!

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Meghan Reitz

Meghan Reitz, LCPC, NCC, has worked within the counseling profession for over 19 years. Her therapist experience includes providing individual, couples, family, group, and crisis counseling. She also speaks with companies and groups on mental health and wellness topics. Learn more about Meghan here.