2 Tips for a Healthy Mental State for Kids

I just watched the movie Screenagers: The Next Chapter. It was good, I’d recommend it. It’s about the effects of screen time. The film included other information as well and I want to share that with you.

Kids need 9-10 hours of sleep

I know that that seems like a lot of sleep but that is when the body rests and repairs. For younger kids, a bedtime of 7, 8 or 9 is reasonable. But try to get a teenager to go to bed that early and you’d have an uphill battle. Saying that 10 o’clock is the latest a high school kid should get to sleep and that would depend on what time they have to get up. Sleep is a natural anti-inflammatory and is needed for a healthy mental state.

Let them figure it out

They shared a fascinating study. They hooked up kids and their parents to a device that monitors stress. Then they put the kid in front of a computer with difficult spatial puzzles on them. The parents were told they were, under no circumstances, allowed to help their kids solve the puzzle. They had to watch and let their children figure it out for themselves even if they didn’t solve the puzzle. What was interesting is that as the parent watched their child struggle the parent’s stress level went up and when the parent helped the child (yes, not one of the parents followed the direction to not help) the parents stress level went down but the child’s stress level went up!

Here’s to raising healthy kids!

Dr. Stacey

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