How play strengthens your child’s mental health

On the Unicef website, a new page devoted to playtime breaks down the research-based benefits on children’s mental health, including the strengthening of bonds, the reduction of stress, and an increased ability to process tough emotions: 

Play is how young children learn and make sense of the world around them. While they are having fun, they are working on critical parts of their development like building motor, cognitive, social and emotional skills. But the power of play extends beyond early learning: it also plays a key role in building your child’s mental health . . . 

Children who play regularly with their parents are less likely to develop anxiety, depression, aggression and sleep problems. . . . 

Research has also shown that making time for play even protects children from the negative impacts of prolonged exposure to stress. Long periods of stressful situations can affect a child’s physical and mental health. Play and positive, supportive relationships with adults can help buffer these effects. . . . 

When children are dealing with complex emotional issues, it often shows up in their play. Giving children space to play allows them to work through feelings such as pain, fear or loss while being able to still act like a child. Play gives them a way to express things they are struggling with that they don’t yet have the words to fully explain.”

Article →***

More from Around the Web

More from Mad in the Family