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💓LAST CHANCE💓 We have teamed...

After yearsssssss of begging us to take her to @legolandflorida, we finally made it! {Hosted} This was Falynn’s 7th birthday trip. I have so much to say about our experience. But first, I have to go through over 1,000 photos 🤦🏻‍♀️. Does anyone else take way too many pictures on family vacations?
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After yearsssssss of begging us...

In 2017, tired of my debilitating anxiety disorder, I went to see a new doctor. She was sure my anxiety was the result of a medical condition. After routine bloodwork, I was told I had a vitamin D deficiency. But that’s it. I left without any more answers than I walked in with. It wasn’t until 2 years later when my friend DM’ed me to tell me that she and a friend (who both suffer from anxiety) had the same results, that I began thinking there must be a connection between anxiety and vitamin D deficiency. Today on the blog, I’m sharing why some studies show that a lack of vitamin D could be linked to anxiety and depression. I think what I found will surprise you. If you suffer from anxiety and/or depression, have you ever been told you’re vitamin d deficient? .
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In 2017, tired of my...

“If you can’t fly then run, if you can’t run then walk, if you can’t walk then crawl, but whatever you do you have to keep moving forward.” - Martin Luther King, Jr. 
Art: @kobrastreetart .
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“If you can’t fly then...

AD: January 20th is National Cheese Day! Do you have the perfect cheesy meal planned yet? Our family will be eating these incredible homemade enchiladas, filled and topped with the best cheese, @trulygrassfed Naturally Aged Cheddar! YUM! This cheese comes from the farms of Ireland, aged for 6+ months to a perfectly smooth and creamy consistency. It's truly delicious. Truly Grass Fed products are always non-GMO, growth hormone rBST-free, antibiotic free, 95% grass fed and imported from Ireland. When you choose Truly, you can be assured you're choosing products that adhere to the highest standards of nutrition, flavor and quality. Their dairy is minimally processed and as close to nature as it gets. BTW, their butter is the best we've ever tasted! #PairsWithYou #ChooseTruly https://lnk2.io/wSpWDmQ .
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AD: January 20th is National...

What did one helmet say to the other?  I'll stay here, you go on a head. .
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What did one helmet say...

Let’s talk about family vacations... #gifted I struggled for years with the amount of time it took to pack up to go back home. There were always dirty clothes all over the floor and while I tried to pack it all into those hotel provided plastic laundry bags, 1) they were plastic and we are trying our best to do better for our planet and 2) they rip so easily, so we often wound up with dirty clothes spilling out in the car (yuck). A couple of months ago, I was watching a friend’s Instagram stories and she was talking about the @swoopbags she uses for her son’s toys. I immediately had an idea and knew I had to get one. 
On our last vacation, I opened up my large swoop bag and left it flat in the corner of our hotel room. We used it as our “laundry corner”. We instructed the kids (and ourselves) to drop our dirty laundry in the middle of the flattened Swoop bag. When it was time to pack up, I just swooped the bag, tied it and voila… it literally saved me all of the aggravation of finding and picking up all of the clothes and trying to find something to carry it all in. Don’t forget to check out the blog for more family travel hacks and a quick video on how I fit all 5 of our clothing into one small suitcase! I put the link in my bio! .
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Let’s talk about family vacations......

Anyone else super excited that today is National Dress Up Your Pet Day?! Elle will be going through a few wardrobe changes today. 🙈 What will your pet be wearing?
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As a family, we road trip quite a lot. It's a ton of fun, but also a lot of work (for me at least)! Over the years, I've found a variety of ways to save time and money and I'm finally sharing those family-friendly travel hacks with you on the blog today! Click on the link in my bio or swipe up in stories! How do you save time and money when you travel?
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Growing up, I always wanted a sibling. I wished over every star and every birthday candle. I even asked my magic eight ball constantly if I would ever have one but as many times as it told me “all signs point to yes”, I remained an only child. I look forward to the days when my three girls appreciate that they have best friends for life... two women who will always have their back, lend them a hand or provide a shoulder to cry on. In the meantime, I make sure to create fun reasons for them to “work” together without bickering. So, I’m excited to announce that Iyla and Falynn are starting a new venture together, @thesuperkidlife and I hope you’ll follow along and show them some love. Although I will run the IG page for them for now, Iyla will be in charge of content and stories, so you’re in for a treat! They already have their first sponsored posts lined up! Stay tuned. . .
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Growing up, I always wanted...

Does your Teen Struggle with Anxiety? 

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You are a parent of a teen. You mostly want to rip your hair out on a daily basis yet wish that today will be the day that your teenage child starts to talk to you. Nope. Not happening. So how do you as a parent know when your teen may be struggling with significant stress levels or anxiety that interfere with learning, relationships, and other areas of functioning? Keep reading to find out. 

Teen Stress vs. Anxiety

Sometimes with teens there is often a less direct source of stress and they may become less aware of what they are even anxious about. They may even feel anxious about being anxious! 

The key between stress and anxiety is a sense of helplessness and ability to affect their daily functioning. Many times, when teens experience fear they feel helpless. As an adult, you may be more likely to dive into the problem causing the stress and know how to problem solve more easily. With anxious teens, they have not yet learned how to master this. 

What to Look For

Many times, teen stress can manifest in different ways and it is important to know what to look for when it comes to teen anxiety. 

Emotional changes: Your teen might appear irritable, agitated, excessively worried, or depressed. Pay attention to changes in behavior. 

Behavioral changes: Look for changes in eating or sleeping habits, and avoidance of normal daily activities or refuse to engage in new experiences (especially school avoidance). Teens may also isolate and avoid their usual activities, have less interest in hanging out with friends. IMPORTANT: **In an attempt to diminish or deny their fears and worries, they may engage in risky behaviors, drug experimentation, or impulsive sexual behavior.** 

Physical changes: Anxious teens are more likely to complain of stomachaches, headaches, or pain in the limbs and back. Teens may also notice their heart beating fast, have shortness in breath, and tense muscles. 

Cognitive changes: Your teen may exhibit decreased concentration, daydreaming, forgetfulness, or sullen, moody, and rebellious. 

When to Seek Help

In some cases, common teen stress can become concerning if your teens starts experiencing an excessive or unrealistic amount of worry, anxiety, and fear. Anxiety that is excessive and unrealistic is different than the ‘normal’ level of stress that a teen may experience. Generalized Anxiety Disorder (GAD) is a diagnosis given to those who experience excessive and irrational worry for at least six months. The excessive anxiety interferes with the ability to function and usually consists of extreme anxiety for everyday matters. 

If you notice any of these changes in your teen, he or she may be experiencing high anxiety. First, try your best to effectively communicate with your child. It is very important to keep the lines of communication open, spend more one-on-one time each week with your teen, and listen carefully and respectfully without discounting their feelings. This may increase the likelihood that your teen will open up to you when he or she is feeling overwhelmed. 

If that doesn’t work, then taking your teen to see a licensed psychotherapist who specialized in Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) would be the next step. CBT techniques are effective in addressing adolescent anxiety disorders and can help your teen recognize the exaggerated nature of his or her fears and develop a corrective approach to the problem. Cognitive-behavioral therapy also tends to be specific to the anxiety problem, and the teen actively participates, which usually enhances their understanding. To find a Cognitive Behavioral Therapist in your area go to www.psychologytoday.com. 

How to Find Alison Seponara, MS, LPC:

Website: AlisonSeponara.com
Instagram: @theanxietyhealer
Facebook: Alison Seponara LPC
Email: AlisonSeponaraLPC@gmail.com

How do parents know when a teen may be struggling with anxiety and significant stress levels that interfere with learning and relationships?

XOXO
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35 Comments
  • Mary
    October 30, 2019

    This is a very helpful article! I think a lot of people deal with anxiety these days.
    Mary recently posted Pampers Swaddlers vs. Cruisers: A Quick ComparisonMy Profile

  • Mommy Rockin In Style
    October 14, 2019

    This is one of the things I am afraid of when my boys grow up. Thanks to this post, now I know what to do when that time comes.
    Mommy Rockin In Style recently posted Eight Beauty Secrets Every Woman Should KnowMy Profile

  • Lyanna Soria
    October 13, 2019

    It’s during teenage years that kids tend to have problems regarding anything like school or friends. Those are some great tips and points to look for if you suspect your teen to have anxiety.

  • Yeah Lifestyle
    October 12, 2019

    My daughter will be turning into a teen soon so, as a parent, it is nice to be prepared to know what to expect and how to handle teen anxiety when the time comes
    Yeah Lifestyle recently posted Award-Winning musical Curtains heads to Hanley’s Regent TheatreMy Profile

  • Olya AMANOVA
    October 12, 2019

    You talk about important issues. And I love how well researched your article is.

  • katrina Kroeplin
    October 11, 2019

    anxiety presents in so many ways. my daughter suffers from anxiety big time. we are trying so many different way to help her along with medication.

  • Fatima Torres
    October 11, 2019

    Physical changes can be tough and you just never know if it’s just a mood swing. I battled with depression when I was a teenager and it was quickly seen as anxiety disorder.

  • Emily Fata
    October 11, 2019

    As someone who suffered with chronic anxiety as a teen, I can definitely back up these points! Thank you so much for sharing something as important as this with your readers.

  • Emily
    October 11, 2019

    These are all really important signs to look out for. My friend has a daughter going through this at the moment, I shall forward this to her
    Emily recently posted The Best Vegan PancakesMy Profile

  • Sue-Tanya Mchorgh
    October 11, 2019

    I remember struggling with anxiety when I was younger. Eventually i got over it but I got over it when I was an adult. I wish I didn’t struggle as much as i did. I am glad you are talking about this topic.

  • Brianna S
    October 11, 2019

    I’m sending this to my cousin, this is such good information!! Thanks for sharing this.

  • Catherine
    October 11, 2019

    Such an important topic to address. I think a lot of teens experience anxiety as they find themselves and try to find their voice in a time where they feel pressure to fit in. Thanks for sharing.
    Catherine recently posted Marinated Jarlsberg Antipasto BoardMy Profile

  • Emman Damian
    October 11, 2019

    It’s all about moral support and also coaching. You also need to divert them out of social media and ask for more friends’ support.
    Emman Damian recently posted Perfect Kid-Friendly Destinations to Visit this AutumnMy Profile

  • Chad
    October 11, 2019

    Anxiety is becoming so widespread among teenagers something needs to be done about it. This is great to detect it and deal with it, thank you.

  • Anne Marie
    October 11, 2019

    I had many anxious moments as a teen, and remember having trouble sleeping and getting a stomachache from worries. My faith, and my closeknit family were essential to weathering these little storms of life!

  • Wren
    October 11, 2019

    This is great information that is needed for everyone! My teenager struggles with some anxiety that she sadly got from me. It is important to be there for them.
    Wren recently posted Some of You May Die…My Profile

  • Ruth I
    October 11, 2019

    Thank you for all of this information. A few teens I know experience anxiety but some moms have no idea what their kids are going through. I will be sharing this with them.

  • Joyce
    October 11, 2019

    I have bookmark your blog post. I do have teen nephews and my older sister is really stressing out. I also am a mother of a 10-year-old son now and will soon become a teenager, I will make sure to go back and review the signs and how to help them overcome anxiety.

  • Krisy
    October 11, 2019

    I love how this serves as an awareness and call to action to all parents out their. No one should ever downplay anxiety!

  • littlemisadvencha
    October 11, 2019

    thanks for sharing this awareness. i know a lot of friends have anxiety and all i can really do is to be there for them.

  • kumamonjeng
    October 11, 2019

    Glad you have clearly highlighted which are the things to look out for. We have to pay more attention to teen and help them grow to be a fine adult.
    kumamonjeng recently posted Spain, Valencia : Eurostars Rey Don Jaime Hotel ReviewMy Profile

  • joy
    October 11, 2019

    Bravo Heather on covering a tough topic like this. many moms will surely be helped by this.
    joy recently posted Freya Lingerie: Take a Walk on the WILD SideMy Profile

  • Sherry
    October 11, 2019

    This was something I worried about when my daughter was a teenager. As a parent I felt helpless not knowing what was wrong or how to help.

  • Marissa
    October 10, 2019

    This is a very helpful article! I think a lot of people deal with this.

  • Nate
    October 10, 2019

    Very solid tips on how to help a teen with anxiety. Especially useful for parents!

  • Maya Gutierrez
    October 10, 2019

    Thank you so much for this article. My son is newly a teenager and it’s like a whole new (scary) world has opened up. This is so helpful.

  • Marta
    October 10, 2019

    Sadly, a friend of mine lost her 13 year old son to suicide last month. Even sadder was that he displayed none of the typical signs. I sat my teens down and had a long, hard conversation only to find out they were both struggling with things I’d never even think they’d wrestle with. It’s so important to have those conversations.
    Marta recently posted Puff Pastry Dough from ScratchMy Profile

    • Heather
      October 10, 2019

      I’m so sorry to hear that Marta!

  • Valerie
    October 10, 2019

    I just read your bio in addition to your article. Our son suffers from DDMD, ADHD, PTSD and Anxiety. 2 steps forward then 1 step back. We are staying the course. Thank you for talking about it.

  • Tami
    October 10, 2019

    I didn’t know the difference when my kiddos were teenagers. Thankfully there was someone nearby that did. This is something all parents should read to be aware of what their teens may be dealing with.
    Tami recently posted Just in Case You Ever Wonder | Children’s Book by Max LucadoMy Profile

  • Amy Desrosiers
    October 10, 2019

    My daughter has a little bit of anxiety related to her grades and tests. I think that is normal, but if it were spilling into everyday of her life I would intervene.

  • This is so helpful, parents should really be on the look for those signs
    Paula @ I’m Busy Being Awesome recently posted Episode 11: Top 5 Secrets to Make Time Blocking Work for YouMy Profile

  • Liz Mays
    October 10, 2019

    This is helpful advice. It really is a good idea to keep an eye open for those behavioral changes. It’s nice when you can catch these things early so you can address them.

  • angelina
    October 10, 2019

    This is so insightful. Thank you so much for sharing with us

  • Colleen
    October 10, 2019

    This is such important information. The teen years are a minefield for both our kids and us. We have to be on the lookout for what could be something more than just stress, and usually our kids aren’t going to tell us.
    Colleen recently posted Scottsdale with Kids – 22 Fun Things to Do in the West’s Most Western TownMy Profile

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Does your Teen Struggle with Anxiety? 

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