Teen brains have a tough time managing stress. Here are some hacks to help you and your teens survive being stuck in the house together.  

Teens, like the girl pictured, spend more time behind screens with schools switching to online learning.
Adapting to online schooling is causing stress for many teens. Photo Credit: Steinar Engeland

Get Your Teens Moving!

The brain grows and changes a lot during teenage years. Exercise that gets the heart pumping helps teens focus. Research suggests it even increases their ability to comprehend.

Everyone is moving around less in quarantine. Switching to online schooling means teens no longer get to walk in between classes, play sports, or have Physical Education.

If we expect teens to focus well enough to learn online, they must also engage in the physical activity. Start a workout routine or play sports with your teens. Both are wonderful ways for you to bond and stay healthy together!

Get Teens Talking About “Fairness”

Teens take part in climate protests, as they think about fairness at this age
Teens think a lot about fairness because of brain development during adolescence. Photo Credit: Vincent M.A.

“That’s not fair!” is a common phrase among teens. During teenage years, the brain develops the ability to see things from other people’s point of view.

Teens are at the perfect stage to talk about right and wrong. Instead of leaving them to obsess over the unfairness of quarantine, engage teens in discussions about current events.

Use age-appropriate news sources such as CNN10.

Talk to Your Teens About Mental Health

Big changes in the brain take place during the teen years. Teens also go through many social, emotional, and physical changes. There are lots of changes happening right now because of quarantine. All this change puts teens at risk for poor mental health.

Talking with your teens about what they are feeling will help them stay mentally healthy. It will also help them build positive habits for the future. Try not to judge. Only give advice if they ask for it. Just be empathetic, even if they feel differently than you do.

Learning to meditate and practice mindfulness can also help. There are online tools parents and teens can use to practice mindfulness together.