[Renton, Washington, October 21, 2021] Teen Link, a peer-to-peer helpline for youth in Washington State and a program of Crisis Connections' is reporting higher rates of anxiety, fear, and suicidal ideation from callers ages 13 to 24 as the 2021 school year commences.
“Returning to school in the fall typically involves excitement, nervousness, and curiosity about what is in store, but youth are facing significant added stress this year regarding physical health, emotional well-being, and even substance abuse that has been concealed at home for over a year.”
- Sarah Armstrong, Teen Link Program Manager
CNN Health reports that globally one in four adolescents are experiencing clinically elevated depression symptoms, and 1 in 5 youth are experiencing clinically elevated anxiety symptoms. Supporting students during the transition to in-person learning amidst Covid-19 is crucial. Teen Link has increased their outreach to adolescents this season, and they are providing tips for parents.
Parents can support youth during these trying times by validating and listening to their concerns and re-enforcing that youth focus on what they can control, such as wearing a mask, finishing their homework, or playing outdoors. Parents can also actively teach their children how to manage stress and support physical health. It will be challenging for adults to resist the urge to rescue their children socially. However, by showing them encouragement and celebrating their small triumphs, we can motivate youth to push through the transition to in-person learning this fall.
Additional Resources Include:
Teen Link: 1.866.833-6546 www.teenlink.org/resources
24-Hr Crisis Line: 1.866.427.4747
Washington Recovery Helpline: 1.866.833.6546
King County 2-1-1: 1.800.621.4636
Suicide Prevention Lifeline: 1.800.273.8255