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February 21, 2018

Mental Health Warning Signs. Caring for the Mental Health of Your Students

Everyone has mental health.

Everyday, we are reminded that our physical health is essential to our well-being. But, it is important that we recognize how our mental health, and that of our students, affects our well-being, too! Did you know that one in five children between the ages of 13-18, have, or will have, a serious mental illness?1As teachers, how can we determine if a student is struggling with a mental health issue? Check out our list of 10 mental health warning signs:

Warning Signs

  1. Feeling very sad or withdrawn for more than 2 weeks (e.g. crying regularly, feeling fatigued, feeling unmotivated).
  2. Trying to harm or kill oneself or making plans to do so.
  3. Out-of-control, risk-taking behaviors that can cause harm to self or others.
  4. Sudden overwhelming fear for no reason, sometimes with a racing heart, physical discomfort or fast breathing.
  5. Not eating, throwing up or using laxatives to lose weight; significantweight loss or gain.
  6. Severe mood swings that cause problems in relationships.
  7. Repeated use of drugs or alcohol.
  8. Drastic changes in behavior, personality or sleeping habits (e.g., waking up early and acting agitated).
  9. Extreme difficulty in concentrating or staying still that can lead to failure in school.
  10. Intense worries or fears that get in the way of daily activitieslike hanging out with friends or going to classes.

Now that we know some of the warning signs, how can we ensure our teenage students are not struggling with a mental health issue and how can we help them if they are? Watch our free, oon-demand webinar focusing on Teen Mental Health, featuring Sarah Johnson, M.S., L.P.C., the Mental Health Director at the LaCrosse Area YMCA . This webinar is packed with knowledge and strategies aimed at identifying mental health concerns, suggestions for ways to mitigate triggers, and self-care techniques to help you be your best so you can effectively care for others.

Sources:

  1. “NAMI.”NAMI: National Alliance on Mental Illness, www.nami.org/Learn-More/Mental-Health-By-the-Numbers

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