Understanding Secondary Trauma Stress – A Guide for Families

Posted by Vanessa Jacoby, PhD on Jun 25, 2019 10:06:46 AM

When a child is injured or traumatized in some way, it’s not unusual for the parents to also experience some emotional impact from the trauma. This is called secondary traumatic stress, or STS, and it’s a form of persistent emotional distress that comes from dealing with your child’s trauma firsthand. STS is more than just feeling burnt out; its signs and symptoms are similar to posttraumatic stress. And parents with their own history of trauma can be especially vulnerable to STS.

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Topics: Children's Mental Health, Mental Health Conditions, Advocacy, Parenting Kids With Mental Illness, Mental Health Wellness, Self-Care, trauma

A Parent’s Guide to Battling Teen Suicide

Posted by Julia Marie Hogan on Apr 9, 2019 4:59:51 PM

A suicide epidemic currently exists among teens. In fact, you’ve probably heard many startling statistics, such as that suicide is the second-leading cause of death between ages 10 and 34, according to the National Institute for Mental Health. And maybe you’ve heard that 8.6% of high school students attempted suicide in the past 12 months, according to The American Foundation of Suicide Prevention.

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Topics: Children's Mental Health, Stigma, Mental Health Conditions, Getting Support, Parenting Kids With Mental Illness, Is My Child Sick?, Causes and Risks

Mental Health Support for Your Child at School – Who’s On the Team?

Posted by Venée M. Hummel, LCSW on Feb 21, 2019 8:00:00 AM

When children are struggling with mental health issues, their performance at school is often one of the first indicators. Your child’s teachers are in the unique position to observe their academic performance, day-to-day mood, interactions with peers and authority figures, and overall functioning in an environment full of social rules and expectations. Teachers have their eyes on many factors that indicate your child’s well-being; and they also have the ability to see changes over the course of the school year. Depending on the size of the school and community, teachers may also have knowledge of your child’s activities and social life outside of the classroom.

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Topics: Children's Mental Health, Getting Support, Parenting Kids With Mental Illness, School Issues

Does My Child Have an Eating Disorder?

Posted by Julia Marie Hogan on Feb 12, 2019 12:51:00 PM

Is your child normally engaged and motivated but suddenly having trouble paying attention? Are they more withdrawn than usual? It might be tempting to write this off as just laziness or a passing “phase.” Yet this might be a sign of a larger problem. In fact, social withdrawal and isolation is often one of the first signs of a possible eating disorder.

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Topics: Children's Mental Health, Mental Health Conditions, Parenting Kids With Mental Illness, Is My Child Sick?, Causes and Risks, Getting Treatment

Securing Your Safety Net: How collaborating with your child on a crisis plan can keep all of you safe

Posted by Liza Long on Jan 17, 2019 12:54:56 PM

That November morning started like any other. I was making pancakes in the kitchen while my 7-year-old daughter and 9-year-old son set the table. Their older brother Eric, 13, soon joined us, prompted by the delicious smell of bacon wafting through the air. As I doled out pancakes, I noticed a stack of books on the counter.

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Topics: Children's Mental Health, Getting Support, Parenting Kids With Mental Illness, Getting Treatment

Parenting Through Winter Break And Starting the New Year Strong

Posted by Vanessa Jacoby, PhD on Dec 28, 2018 11:37:11 AM

The end of the year is approaching, which means we are already halfway through the school year. Holiday parties, special religious celebrations and services, snow days, and winter break are all here. While the holidays are meant to bring us joy, rest, and spiritual rejuvenation, all of these changes also can be disruptive or stressful for families with children. This may be especially true for families with children who have special needs due to a mental health diagnosis.

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Topics: Children's Mental Health, Parenting Kids With Mental Illness, School Issues, Mental Health Wellness

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