Take a Deep Breath

the last word from the BH&G magazine article I’ve been sharing for the past week.

Stress ends hormone hurtling through your child’s body. The basic meditative act of deep breathing can send the all-clear signal, tricking the nervous system into lowering the heart rate and shutting off production of adrenaling and the stress hormone cortisol. Children can learn deep breathing in a heartbeat. It’s this simple:

Inhale slowly through the nose. Hold the breath for a moment, then exhale slowly through the mouth. Have kids focus only on the sound of their breath, only on the simple in and out of it. Have them do this for a few minutes a day – first thing in the morning, after school but before starting homework, and once in the evening before bed. Young  kids can learn this too: Tell them to imagine they’re slowly blowing bubbles as they breathe.

on a personal note:

You may remember that I am homeschooling an 8th grade son who has Tourette Syndrome. Although he is bright, he could not perform in school last year because of his extreme anxiety due to the teasing of fellow classmates (he has tics which only get worse in stressful situations). He does attend public school every day this year simply to participate in the band and another elective, and I find that he is way more interactive with his fellow students, even calling them on the phone and planning sleepovers. Lifting that burden of the academics off his shoulders allows him to socialize during that brief period while he is at school. Trying to keep up with the academics while controling the tics and staving off the teasing was just more than one child could manage. Parents, come to the aid of your special needs children.