How can I help if my child feels stressed?

Not all stress is bad. Sometimes it helps us manage challenge, such as focusing for an exam. But there are times when stress can make things more difficult.

Let your child know there’s no need to worry about feeling stressed. You can show them how to manage these emotions in a healthy way.

A mother and daughter looking into the camera

Check in with your child

Check in with your child often to see how they’re doing. Notice how they respond during times of change or pressure. Make sure they know you’re there to talk if they want.

Your child’s day-to-day lifestyle can also affect how they feel in the first place. Are they eating well, sleeping well, and exercising? Try to help them develop healthy habits over time.

Read our advice on spotting the signs of stress.

Help them develop good habits

Encourage your child to:

  • Talk to others about their worries.
  • Set realistic goals and expectations.
  • Remember to value themselves.
  • See uncertainty as part of life, rather than something to worry about.
  • Notice what activities they find relaxing and use these to wind down.

Suggest activities to ease stress

If your child or teenager is open to ideas, see if you can give them some tactics to reduce stress. This could include:

If they sometimes feel anxious too, read our advice on how to support your child with anxious feelings.

Go back

How to practise mindfulness at home with children

Read

Activity: Describe an object to calm anxious thoughts

Read

The worry tree activity for anxious feelings

Read

Activity: Help teenagers challenge anxious thoughts

Read

Talk to us

Free and confidential live chat with parenting staff. Chat online or request a call back when it’s convenient for you.

Chat icon on mobile phone