Mindful Parenting: How to Support Young Adult Mental Wellness
Raising a young adult can be a challenging task. As your child enters the tumultuous period of adolescence, it is more critical than ever that parents stay vigilant and recognize the need for mental wellness. Parents must understand the risks for mental health issues, be open and aware of the potential signs of distress, and know when to get help. Adopting a mindful parenting approach can help parents to build a trusting relationship with their adolescent while supporting their young adult’s mental wellness.
Understand the Risks
Parents need to be aware that mental illness can affect their young adult children. According to the National Institute of Mental Health, “Mental illnesses are common in the United States. Nearly one in five (20.6%) adults will experience mental illness in a given year.” Knowing the risks of several mental health issues can equip parents with the knowledge to know when to ask for help.
Signs of Distress to Watch
Knowing the different signs that appear in a young adult overwhelmed by mental illness is the first step towards helping them. The warning signs for mental health issues among young adults can include:
- Loss of interest in activities
- Changes in eating and sleeping habits
- Withdrawal from family and friends
- Decline in personal hygiene
- Drug and alcohol use
- Mood swings
- Self-harm or reports of suicidal thoughts
If your young adult exhibits any number of these signs, it is important that they receive professional help as soon as possible.
Fostering an Open Relationship
Mental health issues can push children, especially young adults, away from their parents. It is therefore important that parents try to maintain an open relationship with their young adult, even if this can be difficult.
This could include:
- Having honest conversations about their thoughts and feelings
- Giving them space, but still making themselves available
- Not lecturing and avoiding dismissive remarks
- Being supportive and encouraging during difficult times
These habits ensure that young adults have a positive perspective on talking about mental health issues and encourage them to reach out for help.
Mental Wellness Support Services
There are a number of services available that are designed to support young adult mental wellness. These can include:
- Counseling – To provide a safe space to talk with a professional
- Support groups – To connect young adults with peers that are going through similar issues
- Life skills courses – To help young adults build healthy coping mechanisms
- Referral programs – To provide people with access to resources and support
- Online Resources – To help connect people with further help
These services serve to provide young adults with the guidance and the resources that they need.
Raising a young adult is no small feat. As parents seek to foster a loving relationship with their children, making sure that their mental health is taken care of is of paramount importance. It is vital that parents remain vigilant and take any signs of mental health issues seriously. Adopting mindful parenting strategies and seeking out the right mental wellness services are the keys to helping young adults to thrive.
By staying informed, involved, and connected, parents can make sure that their young adults receive the care and support that they need.