Mental Health Issues

Mental health issues can affect any family, at any time. Buts stigmas around these issues can prevent parents from reaching out for help, for fear that they or their child will be judged.

Fortunately, there’s hope. People are breaking down barriers and talking more openly about mental illness and mental health issues. And with increased awareness and visibility comes greater access to resources for parents who struggle with these challenges.

These videos offer parental support and information on topics such as depression, self-harm, and how to obtain the help your child needs.

How can yoga help my teenager and me deal with stress and anxiety?

Rachel Grundner, RYT, Y12SR
The Yogi Within

There are three aspects of yoga that will reduce stress and anxiety and aid in recovery of addiction and depression. These three things are:

1. Asanas (the physical postures of yoga) – When doing asanas, we are compressing and releasing different muscle groups in the body, controlling the movement and flow of our blood and breathe which has a profound detoxification effect (both mentally and physically). Additionally, whether in a yoga class or a quiet space at home, we guide our attention from outside distractions inward by concentrating on the hold of each posture. This helps us to release from our perceived reality – where the source of our stress and anxiety resides- and focus on the true nature of our Selves.

2. Pranayama (breathing techniques) – At some point in the midst of a stressful situation, we have all heard the phrase, “Just breathe.” Breathing has an enormous effect on reducing stress and anxiety as well as increasing oxygen to the brain so that we can process situations more efficiently. It can even be said to “slow down” our perception of time. In yoga, breathe is tied to movement to enhance the effort of focus for the individual. Additionally, there are specific breathing techniques that can be used to induce an immediate state of deep relaxation.

3. Meditation – For thousands of years we have studied Meditation as a source of deep relaxation, increased self awareness, and natural healing of the body and mind. In yoga, we prepare to obtain this state through asanas and pranayama. Once we have reached a meditative state, we have released ourselves from the captivity of our thoughts and emotions that cause stress and anxiety, which later can induce depression and addictive behavior. We are then able to observe our lives from an external point of view and become very aware of the source of our suffering. Only once we are aware of ourselves, our surroundings, and our true situation, can we take action to evolve beyond these diseases of the mind.