Which Relaxation Techniques Are Best And Easiest For Younger Children To Learn?

Michelle Bailey, M.D, Duke

Question: Which relaxation techniques are best and easiest for younger children to learn?

Answer:Relaxation techniques that come easily to very young children include things like relaxation breathing, in addition to guided imagery, otherwise known as visualization. Young children tend to have very active imaginations. This can be utilized to help them learn the techniques of visualization, where they're able to explore the different senses, their ideas, and other thoughts to help them calm down or relax in a stressful situation.

Similarly, relaxation breathing is a very easy technique for children to learn. Most children enjoy blowing bubbles with chewing gum, or using a soap wand to blow bubbles. These exercises are great to teach children how to take deep, slow breaths. This helps break the cycle of the stress response -- things that can cause children to feel uncomfortable when they're really worried or anxious.

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