Our hearts go out to all individuals and families affected by the BC wildfires.
Natural disasters like wildfires can cause heightened levels of stress and anxiety in children and youth. While many children and youth are resilient and will overcome these feelings, some need extra support to cope. BC Children’s Hospital is sharing tips and resources on how families can ease anxiety and stress during this difficult time:
- Maintain a routine as best as you can – try to keep regular meal times and healthy sleep schedules.
- Participate in activities as a family – enjoying time together as a family can help children cope.
- Have thoughtful discussions about the situation – give your children an opportunity to talk about their experiences and help them identify their feelings.
- Show your children love, trust and support.
- Kelty Mental Health Resource Centre: A provincial resource centre that provides mental health and substance use information, resources, and peer support to children, youth and their families from across BC.
- Breathr Mindfulness App: An app designed to introduce the concept of mindfulness, offering a variety of mindfulness practices, while also teaching them interesting facts about the brain science behind those practices.
- MindShift: An interactive app designed to help youth learn how to relax, develop more helpful ways of thinking and identify active steps that will help them take charge of their anxiety.
- mindcheck.ca: An online resource to help youth and young adults age 13-25 to check how they’re feeling and quickly connect to mental health resources and support.
- Stresslr: A free web app for children ages 9-11 to learn about stress, understand how they react to it, and develop healthy strategies to cope with stress in their everyday lives.
- AnxietyBC: Information on how anxiety can express itself and effective strategies to address it in children, youth and young adults.