Do you remember how stressful it was being a teenager? Everything and anything could become a potential disaster. As adults we now understand that missing a party, or doing poorly on a test, may be disappointing, but not the end of the world. As much as we may be able to logically work through these disappointments now, it does not make these stresses any less real for teenagers in the midst of it all. And lets not minimize their issues to just missing a party either. Teens are under a tremendous amount of pressure and stress. Some of it is biological, some of it may be social, some of it may be work or school related, and some of it may be due to familial situation. We expect them to know what their life path is by 16 or 17. School and scholarships are increasingly competitive. Organized sports leave little to no time for anything else. Establishing independence and a bit of space with parents often means conflict. And social media has changed the face of social interactions as we know it, and teens of this generation are left to try and navigate these new, sometimes scary, waters all on their own.
Teens of this generation are also the product of highly structured lives. Because of work and lifestyle, many children spend their days in childcare facilities from the time they are 12 months old, until they reach high school at which point they often have extra-curriculars, jobs or both, that keep them from having very much down time. And what little down time they have can also be spent on social media (which is a whole other can of worms). Social media, though thought to be used to unwind, can increase feelings of anxiety, depression and low self esteem. Sometimes they have not been shown, or do not know how to relax. It is important for parents and care givers to model and talk to teens about good self care habits which can include non structured hobbies that are done solely for pleasure, good talk therapy from a trained professional where teens can discuss the issues that are important in their own lives and learn healthy coping strategies, and massage therapy to reduce muscle tension, anxiety and increase feelings of well being.
Massage Therapy is effective in reducing muscle tension, mental stress and anxiety even after the first treatment. A lot of teens feel uncomfortable opening up to adults about their issues. Massage Therapy provides a safe, confidential environment where anyone, not just teens, can just be. No expectations, no obligations, just gentle music, gentle environment and space to think. It's amazing just how beneficial that can be! Massage therapy can increase feelings of well being and confidence, and allow the mind to settle. A calm and focused mind enables people to approach problems and conflict in a more positive and thought out fashion which leads to better outcomes overall.
As parents and care givers it is important for us to let kids know that this type of self care can be very beneficial to physical and mental well being. One of the most effective ways to get this message across is to model the behaviour. Go ahead and make the appointment!
(for you and your teen). If you have any questions regarding Massage Therapy for your teen or youngster, please do not hesitate to contact us!