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Holiday stress can affect kids too. Here's how Parents can help

Dr. Rebekah Lemmons with Youth Villages in Memphis says different factors like overscheduling and long trips can contribute to a child's stress during the holidays.

MEMPHIS, Tenn. — Holidays can be stressful for parents, but also for their children.

Dr. Rebekah Lemmons with Youth Villages in Memphis says, on average, they see about 36,000 kids. 

Dr. Lemmons says different factors can impact children. Over scheduling, long trips, and a parent’s frustration can all contribute to a child’s stress as Christmas approaches.

With children’s mental health in the forefront the past few years, experts advise parents to pay attention to your kids while they are home.

Doctors say to keep an eye out for nervous behaviors like nail biting or hair twirling. Parents should also look out for physical complaints like head and stomach aches.

A child crying for small reasons or troubles can be a sign that your child might be feeling a little holiday stress.

“It’s best to pull them aside and have a conversation with them while doing something fun and engaging so the pressure is taken off. So you can get their perspective on what’s going on. Sometimes kids just need to be seen, heard, and validated and knowing they have unconditional love from parents,” Rebekah Lemmons, Ph.D. said.

Dr. Lemmons says if you notice any early signs, there are different ways to reduce a child’s stress levels.

She advises sticking to their routine, making sure they get enough outside time, and not over packing their schedule.

Reminding a child why they are celebrating the holidays in the first place can help as well.

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