Back-to-School: Helping students deal with anxiety - | News, Weather & Sports in Billings, Montana

Back-to-School: Helping students deal with anxiety

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It's understandable that many students have a few butterflies on their first few days of school. Other students go through something worse, full on anxiety.

KULR 8's Briana Monte spoke with Wendy McAndrews who provides behavioral health services at Orchard Elementary's school-based clinic. She said she has noticed that students do have anxiety and it's a very normal feeling to have. She said that the first day of school can be a big change and transition, which is anxiety-provoking. She also said anxiety can affect a student's focus, and they can experience stomach pains, headaches, have trouble sleeping, or it can cause them to behave in ways they normally wouldn't. McAndrews said parents can help students with anxiety by doing more to help prepare them for school.

"When somebody knows what's expected or when they know what's going to happen, that actually helps," McAndrews said. "It kind of takes away some of those what if's, oh no's, or what now's. It's important to have general things like where's the class, do I have ll the supplies that I need, where's the restroom, who's going to pick me up from school, and where am I going to be going."

McAndrews said that students who experience anxiety can help themselves out by taking three good deep breaths or taking the moment to remember, that you have done this before and you have the skills you need to be able to overcome that anxiety. Parents can reassure them of that too.

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