Anxiety Management Help for Parents

There are things you can do to help you or your child to get anxiety under control. 

Below are 10 strategies / techniques suggested by the American Psychological Association and Harvard Medical School to help manage anxiety.

Tips and Tricks

1. Deep Breaths

If you feel anxious, try taking slow, deep breaths. Breathe in very slowly through your nose for a count of 10, and then breathe out through your mouth for a count of ten. Doing this at least a few times can help you feel calmer. 
To help your child...  Build 5 minutes into your day where you and your child can practice deep breathing or guided meditations.  

2. Challenge Negative Thoughts

Anxiety often comes with negative thoughts that make you worry or feel scared.
Try to identify these thoughts and ask yourself if they are realistic. Then replace them with more positive or realistic thoughts. 

To help your child...
Sit down with them, let them vent their thoughts.  Then ask questions about the thoughts to teach them how to analyze the negative thoughts, disprove them, and replace them with positive thoughts.    

3. Stay Active

Moving your body releases feel-good chemicals that can help you feel better.
Find activities you enjoy, like riding your bike, dancing, going for a walk, etc.

To help your child...
The American Pediatric Association recommends at least 1 hour of heart pumping activity each day.  This also might mean limiting recreational screen time or requiring your child to get the exercise before any recreational screen time.

You can also lead by example.  Tell them that you are feeling anxious so you are going to go for a walk or other form of exercise and ask them if they would like to join you.       

4. Break Tasks Into Smaller Steps

It's easy for big tasks to feel overwhelming and increase anxiety. Instead, break them down into smaller, more manageable steps. Focus on one step at a time, and celebrate your progress along the way. 


To help your child...

Sit down with your child and help them write out each small step needed to complete the large task.  After everything is mapped out, you can have it in a place where your child can see it and check off each step as it is completed.    

5. Practice Relaxation Techniques

Try relaxation exercises like progressive muscle relaxation, listening to calming music, or guided meditations. These techniques can help your body and mind relax when you or your child are feeling anxious.

To help your child...

Build 5 minutes into your day where you and your child can both sit and practice these techniques.  Remember, like with any type of working out, the benefits comes with time and consistency.

6. Talk to Someone You Trust

It's important to share your feelings with someone you trust, like a family member, friend, or teacher. They can offer support, lend an ear, or help you find resources to manage your anxiety.

To help your child...

Try and keep the lines of communication open.  There are school resources available to help your child as well.

7. Take Care of Yourself

Make sure to prioritize self-care. Get enough sleep, eat nutritious meals, and engage in activities you enjoy. Taking care of yourself can help you feel more balanced and better equipped to handle anxiety.

To help your child...

Make sure they are getting enough sleep, daily exercise, and eating healthy.

8. Avoid Excessive Caffeine and Stimulants:

Foods and drinks with high caffeine content, like coffee or energy drinks, can increase anxiety symptoms. Limit the intake of caffeine for yourself or your child to help manage anxiety.

9. Use Grounding Techniques

When anxiety feels overwhelming, you or your child can use grounding techniques to bring yourself back to the present moment. Focus on your senses by noticing five things you can see, four things you can touch, three things you can hear, two things you can smell, and one thing you can taste.

To help your child... 

When your child is feeling anxious, sit with them and practice this technique.

10. Seek Professional Help

If anxiety becomes persistent for you or your child and affects your daily life, consider talking to a mental health professional. They can provide guidance and support, and offer strategies tailored to your specific needs. Find a Therapist or Counselor at To help your child... There are local resources and school resources that can help you find a counselor or therapist for your child.

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