What can be the most wonderful time of the year for some may be the most anxious for others.

This week, local students will be heading back to school and as exciting as it is to embark on new challenges and meet up with old friends, there are times students could feel a lot of stress.

Family Counselor with Community Links Eileen Whitehouse explains some of the anxieties students face at this time.

"Which schools are they going to go to. In case there's a change, a move in the family, parents are separated and so a child has to change schools...Transportation. How are they going to get there and then Teacher. Who is going to be their Teacher."

Whitehouse says that while their door is open at the beginning of the year, they usually don't see an influx of students looking for support until at least a month later.

"Usually we see children in the school as well, but I don't go in until the third week because things need to be settled, kids need to know who's who...we actually start seeing the influx of more referrals in October."

When it comes to dealing with the anxiety at the start of school, Whitehouse says the entire family should contribute, not just the children.

Her best tips include starting their routines early and staying to those schedules, especially with sleep. Proper meals are also important and Whitehouse says that's an activity everyone can take part in.

Having conversations about upcoming school activities are also crucial, whether they're new or continuing activities.

Whitehouse adds that the stress of school doesn't always happen to kids.

"Especially if a parent themselves are doing a change from work or going back to school themselves, it's very important that the parent shares that as well so as a family they kind of all know what each one is doing."

Questions, comments or story ideas? Email us at [email protected]

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