Raising Our Children to Be Resilient: A Guide to Helping Children Cope with Trauma in Todays World

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According to the Mayo Clinic, high levels of resilience in diabetes patients are associated with lower A1C levels, indicating better glycemic control. Research published in April in the journal Frontiers in Psychiatry linked resilience, notably personal strengths and social factors, to improved psychological and treatment-related outcomes for cancer patients.

People suffering from anxiety and depression frequently report gastrointestinal distress as a primary symptom. Building resilience can reduce the stress and anxiety associated with some GI symptoms. Research published in January in the journal Neurogastroenterology and Motility showed a connection between low resilience and worsened irritable bowel syndrome IBS symptoms. Dermatologic disorders are often accompanied by anxiety and stress. Stress, in turn, can trigger flare-ups of skin-related conditions, such as psoriasis and eczema. Studies suggest that patients with conditions like psoriasis show signs of less resilience, and early intervention to build resilience can improve symptoms and management of these conditions.

Studies have linked endometriosis and chronic, potentially debilitating pain to depressive mood, anxiety, and reduced resilience. Resilience can be an important factor in reducing the effects on physical, mental, and social well-being. Kids confront any number of challenges as they grow — from starting school and making new friends to adverse, traumatic experiences, such as bullying and abuse.

The 7 Cs model specifically addresses resilience building in kids and teens. It lists competence, confidence, connection, character, contribution, coping, and control as essential skills for young people to handle situations effectively.


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Parents can help children develop resilience through positive behaviors and thoughts. The APA lists 10 tips for building resilience in young people:. There is no universal formula for building resilience in young people. If a child seems overwhelmed or troubled at school and at home, parents might consider talking to someone who can help, such as a counselor, psychologist, or other mental health professional. Studies on resilience and gender suggest that men and women may respond differently to adversity and trauma. But the results have been conflicting.

In terms of survival and longevity, women historically thrive in greater numbers than men during times of crisis such as famines and epidemics. Even when overall life expectancy rose, researchers found women outlived men between six months and four years, according to an article published in January in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

On the other hand, studies have found that women are approximately twice as likely as men to develop PTSD after a traumatic event.

Helping Young Military-Connected Children Develop Resilience - Military Families Learning Network

The reason for the gender difference is unclear, but it may have something to do with coping style for dealing with trauma. Resilience benefits both men and women when facing challenges and adversity. However, women also draw on resilience to overcome obstacles more often placed in their way, such as job discrimination, sexual harassment, and domestic violence. One study found that when confronted with gender bias in the workplace, women relied on adopting male characteristics, mentoring, and intrinsic motivational factors to work through obstacles.

Resilience can protect both men and women from mental health conditions, such as depression and anxiety. Research has found that men who lack resilience are exponentially more vulnerable to becoming severely depressed after the loss of a spouse. The study, published in September in the journal The Gerontologist , also showed that men with high resilience showed no additional depressive symptoms following a loss, and their overall well-being almost mirrored that of their married counterparts.


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  5. Another study, published in in the journal Progress in Community Health Parterships , focused on perceived sources of stress and resilience, specifically among African American men, and found that most men found support for resiliency through family and religion.

    Research has shown that social support is a key moderating factor for resilience among caregivers. That support can be provided by family members and friends, as well as physicians and social workers. One study, published in January in the journal BMC Psychiatry , stressed that healthcare professionals should help identify supportive family members and friends to help alleviate caregiver burden.

    There are many ways to encourage resilience in people. Something as simple as an inspiring quote can be empowering. There are also surprising forms of expression, like tattoos, that can tell stories of resilience and serve as motivational examples. Raise your sail and begin.

    Tattoos can mean different things and serve many purposes — from being a form of artistic self-expression to commemorating an important event or recognizing someone special. From words and phrases to symbols and poetry, tattoos remind people of their strength and how they have overcome challenges such as an illness or loss.

    A Guide to Helping Children Cope with Trauma in Today's World

    Getting a tattoo is a decision that should be carefully considered, but it can be a source of inspiration to yourself and others. Literature and pop culture provide reminders that resilience is common to the human condition. Here are some of the top reads, films, and shows about ways to build inner strength and stories of people who drew on their own resilience.

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    Stories of public figures, celebrities, and other personalities who have overcome challenges in life can help others feel less alone and even be empowering. Every day, people from all walks of life face health and personal challenges. Their stories of resilience offer hope and inspiration to others facing adversity. Adopting a healthy lifestyle that includes balanced meals and regular exercise requires resilience. It can be difficult to change habits, particularly when it comes to curbing negative eating and sleeping habits.

    Persistence, realistic optimism, and support systems can help people develop healthier lifestyles. Exercising with a friend, for example, makes the process more fun and less isolating. Getting the whole family involved in healthy meal planning makes it less stressful. Changing habits involves a healthy dose of self-awareness. Putting supports in place to keep you on track will help you meet your goals and create better habits.

    For more information on the importance of resilience, what you can do to build up resilience, and how to practice it in your life, visit the following resources:. The Human Rights Resilience Project This website brings together research, resources, and tools to improve resilience and well-being within the human rights community. American Psychological Association — The Road to Resilience Compiled by the American Psychological Association, this resource helps people learn how to cope with difficult life situations, including trauma.

    It can be difficult to know how and when to get help with feelings of anxiety, depression, and other mental health conditions. Reaching out for help is a good first step toward building resilience and improving your overall well-being. Good Therapy It can be hard to know where to start when looking for a therapist. Good Therapy helps you find support right in your ZIP code. Young people need help learning to develop resilience in a stressful world. They need specific resources.

    Edutopia: Resources on Developing Grit, Resilience, and Growth Mindset This is a curated list of resources to help parents and educators teach and support grit, resilience, and growth mindset. Marginalized youth have a higher risk of bullying, violence, and suicide. There are resources out there to help all youth know that they are not alone. Born This Way Foundation Born This Way supports the wellness of young people using evidence-based programs that are kind, compassionate, accepting, and inclusive.

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    Resilience Resource Center. What Is Resilience? Resilience empowers people to accept and adapt to situations and move forward. Why Is the Year of Resilience.

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    What Is Resilience Theory? Sood, who is a member of the Everyday Health Wellness Advisory Board, believes that resilience can be defined in terms of five principles: Gratitude Compassion Acceptance Meaning Forgiveness Top Factors of Resilience Developing resilience is both complex and personal. These factors include: Social Support Research published in in the journal Ecology and Society showed that social systems that provide support in times of crisis or trauma support resilience in the individual. Realistic Planning The ability to make and carry out realistic plans helps individuals play to their strengths and focus on achievable goals.