.Fulton school counsellors are trained counsellors that provide short-term effective interventions and support for students who are struggling with their mental health.
Sleep is important to your physical and mental health. It allows your mind to digest and make sense of
the day’s events. It prepares your brain for learning new things the next day. During sleep, your brain even cleans itself! Simply put, sleep is essential for life and getting the proper amount of sleep helps us cope better with whatever life brings our way.
Getting enough sleep is essential for your emotional health. You may start to feel out of sorts and like you are not yourself if you’re not sleeping well. Noises can seem louder, and colours too bright; small
irritations feel like big problems, and even thinking can become a chore.
It can get harder to solve problems and you may experience more aches and pains, less energy, and less interest in life. The less you sleep, the more anxious you can become about getting enough sleep, and this might make it even harder to fall asleep. You can end up in a vicious cycle – at the mercy of your over-active mind, feeling unwell, and feeling out of control.
There are lifestyle changes that middle- and high-schoolers can make, and even several small changes can have a big effect on their well-being. Here is some expert advice on how to win back a couple of precious hours a night:
Take a stand
It’s important for your teen to go to bed as close as possible to the same time every night, and to get as close as possible to eight hours of sleep. But it’s also important for him to stick to the same schedule — within reason — on the weekends.
Limit screen time
Boost the biological clock
Pump up productivity
Keep the bed for sleep
Each of us will face the death of a loved one at some time in our lives. As adults, we seek help from family, friends, and outside supports during the grief process. But who helps a young person cope with the death of a loved one? Young people naturally turn to other significant persons in their life for support. Although children may understand and respond to illness and death differently than adults, helping a grieving child is not that different from helping a grieving adult. As a clinician, your interaction can have an important impact on helping a child deal with a loved one‟s illness and death in a healthy way.
Common Characteristics of Grief
||What have you experienced?|
||Withdrawal from friends and family
Increased dependency on others
A need for acting “normal” around others
A need for relationships apart from those related to grief
Self-absorbed (no energy for interest in others)
Family role changes
Change in social patterns and status
Hypersensitivity to topics of loss
Need for rituals
Fulton School Counsellors
Watch these mindfulness videos to guide you through mindfulness practice. These short mindfulness practices can support you in becoming more present and reduce stress in your daily life. You can access all these videos on the Health Promotion Video Library.
Mindfulness Audio Recording
Mindfulness helps you become focused and allows you to rest from constant thinking. Practice being in the present and let go of worries about the future and past.
There is no doubt that the threat and precautionary measures of the COVID-19 pandemic are causing a high level of stress and worry. As students you may have questions and fears related to this situation and; therefore, your capacity to stay calm, present, and compassionate is more important than ever.
While we are not able to meet as directly as we would like, we want to share some strategies that you can use and share with friends and loved ones….
Maintain a healthy routine
Moderate screen time
Maintain a nutritious diet and drink plenty of water
Exercise and go outside
Stay connected to people
Limit COVID-19 related media
Ask for help when you need it
Changing the Record
Come back to the present moment.
Your mind may wander into worries about the future and uncertainties, but even when that is happening you can return your attention to the present moment, using breathing as a “home base.” Try to maintain this exercise for 3-5 minutes.
While unpleasant, it’s important to acknowledge and accept a current situation. For example, right now you may be feeling grief or sadness over something that has been lost or cancelled. Even while accepting this reality, try to bring awareness to the positive realities in your life that are still available to nourish your wellness in the present moment.
Try the “This is not cancelled” Practice:
Make a physical, verbal or mental list out loud of positive things you have noticed recently that has not been cancelled or changed (the sun on your face, a favourite song, fresh air, the support of friends and family).
You can even practice this with others, either out loud (phone / online) or on social media, and it becomes a wonderful group practice and sharing!
Daily formal meditation/mindfulness.
Maintaining a daily or as-needed meditation practice can provide you with a period of time every day to just “be” and not have to “do”. With so much uncertainty it can seem overwhelming so pausing to centre and ground yourself resets your mind and allows you to transition your thinking. It doesn’t necessarily get rid of your thoughts, but it calms your mind so that we can process those thoughts and make rational (rather than panicked) choices.
Source: Uhill School Counselling dept.
The Ministry of Children and Family Development offer mental health service through their WALK-IN Child and Youth Mental Health CLINICs:
Walk-in service is where children and youth can receive a same-day initial assessment by a trained professional in a confidential environment.
CYMH service is FREE.
*A doctor’s referral is not needed.
Walk-in Clinic days and hours of operation
TUESDAYS & THURSDAYS
9am – 11am AND 1pm – 3pm
Appointments are NOT necessary!
Tips to manage mental health during COVID-19
In the wake of COVID-19, Canadians are facing a new reality of social distancing, self-quarantining and isolation in order to protect public health and safety. These new circumstances may lead individuals with mental health concerns into heightened symptoms of anxiety and depression.
In what may be a difficult time for many, the Canadian Mental Health Association (CMHA) is offering some basic tips to help people remain calm and balanced as this public health situation unfolds.
Considering the level of attention and seriousness being paid to COVID-19, it’s normal to feel anxious. Try not to avoid, ignore or suppress anxious thoughts. Instead, be aware of your anxiety and accept that you’re feeling anxious in this situation. Try to keep things in perspective; notice and challenge your thoughts that may be extreme or unhelpful.
Self-care is critically important at this time, as worries can be made worse if we aren’t taking care of ourselves. Lean on social supports, try to get enough sleep, eat healthy, exercise and engage in enjoyable activities. Do the things you would typically do to support your health, and be sure to use caution and follow health and safety guidelines while doing them.
Seek information from reliable news sources only. Limit checking in on the latest news to short, defined periods, and refrain from setting related push notifications on your device. Appropriate information consumption may be calming and can lessen the sense of danger.
Take the recommended precautions as outlined by the B.C. Centre for Disease Control and other credible health agencies. Remain focused on the factors within your control, such as washing hands, covering your mouth during coughs and sneezes, avoiding non-essential travel, etc.
If you’re noticing that your symptoms of anxiety (in association with COVID-19 or otherwise) are causing you significant distress or are interfering with your ability to function normally, reach out to your school counsellor and we will help connect you to the most appropriate community resource.
Adapted from https://windsoressex.cmha.ca
Anxiety Canada is a non-profit organization whose mission is to increase awareness and promote the education of anxiety disorders. There is an entire section dedicated to youth, tips for parents of all ages, and a wealth of helpful information! Topics include: Anxiety 101 How to Chill, Facing Fears Healthy Habits, Thinking Right, Common Problems (test anxiety, fear of needles, trouble sleeping, panic attacks, etc.)
BC Children’s Kelty Mental Health Resource Centre
Kelty Mental Health Resource Centre helps families navigate the mental health system, listens and offers peer support, and connects them to resources and tools. Check out the website for lots of supports.
Losing someone is hard. Mygrief.ca will help you understand and work through your grief. It was developed by families and grief experts and there are stories from people who have “been there.” BC programs and services also linked to this website
These resources are APPS that you can download Apps onto your personal device