Maintaining Your Child's Mental Health Over the Summer Break

Summer vacation is right around the corner.  For your kids, this means freedom.  For you, it may also mean stress and anxiety about how they will be spending this large amount of free time and how it may affect the hard-won gains of the school year. For most parents and kids, summertime is a needed respite from the previous 9 months of structure and stress.  For some, however, this sudden shift can disorganize or destabilize what took many months to finally manage and master.  For those of us who fit into the latter category, consider laying out a road map by creating a planner (a white board works nicely) to visualize daily (or weekly) expectations. Consider listing things like:

Personal Hygiene


Music Lessons Karate Lessons Sports Camp Family Vacations Exercize (20-30 mins, 3 times per week) In-person Contact with Others (i.e., not online) Videogaming/Online Time (consider quality & not just quantity) Meals Sleep (8-10 hrs)   Studies show that creating such expectations (even on summer break) helps to curb depression, helps with focusing issues, and helps your kids learn to make good, independent choices. Good luck and have a great summer! Dr. S