Why is Good Mental Health Important for Your Child?
Good mental health lets young people live their best lives. It is a key component in a child’s healthy development. It positively affects his or her ability to learn, interact with peers, and reach his or her full potential.
As a Parent, How Can You Help?
We all have a hand in promoting good mental health. One key role for parents and family members is being aware of the warning signs for mental health concerns. It is important to identify any concerns as early as possible in children and adolescents.
How Does Early Identification Help?
It guides parents to find and use helpful resources. It leads to clear dialogue with health care providers. And it allows young people to access the care they need for any mental health concerns. All these steps help ensure that children have the best opportunities to lead full and productive lives.
Social and emotional development is a primary benefit of good mental health. This affects every part of a child’s life. Children who develop good social and emotional skills are able to:
Make and Keep Friends
Understand and Express Emotions
Achieve Success in School
Develop Healthy Eating and Sleeping Patterns
Resources for Parents and Family Members
Access these videos and flyers to help you identify and navigate any child’s mental health concerns.
Supporting Families During COVID-19
Cyberbullying and School Refusal
Supporting Children and Youth Affected by Loss and Grief
Understanding the Effects of Loss of a Parent or Caregiver on Children and Adolescents and Ways to Provide Support.
Where Can I Learn More?
Parent Guides on Social and Emotional Wellness
A set of parent guides developed by the NYS Office of Mental Health to help parents better understand their child’s social emotional development from ages 1 – 18.
- A Guide for Parents of One to Five Years Olds
- A Guide for Parents of Five to Ten Years Olds
- A Guide for Parents of Ten to Twelve Year Olds
- A Guide for Parents of Twelve to Fifteen Year Olds
- A Guide for Parents of Fifteen to Eighteen Year Olds
The Clay Center for Young Healthy Minds
A practical, online educational resource dedicated to promoting and supporting the mental, emotional, and behavioral well-being of children, teens, and young adults through a narrative, multimedia approach.
An American Academy of Pediatrics program that provides a common framework for well-child care from birth to age 21
An American Academy of Pediatrics program, parents with guidance on parenting issues to promote the optimal physical, mental, and social health for children.
American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry (AACAP) Facts for Families
“Facts for Families” provide concise and up-to-date information on behavioral health issues that affect children, teenagers, and their families.
Council on Children and Families
The Council on Children and Families coordinates New York’s health, education and human services systems to provide more effective systems of care for children and families.
NYS Multiple Systems Navigator – Resources for Family/Youth Support and Peer Advocacy
Provides resources from across multiple New York State systems to help young people, parents, and family members with behavioral, emotional, physical and/or mental health challenges.
Help Me Grow Western NY
A resource connecting families of children 0-5 years to community resources and child development information in Western NY and Long Island.
AACAP Resource Centers
AACAP resources centers offer information regarding various mental health conditions, with definitions, answers to frequently asked questions, clinical resources, and expert videos.
AACAP ADHD Parents Medication Guide
An educational guide for families with children with ADHD.
Anxiety and Depression Association of America (ADAA)
An international nonprofit organization dedicated to the prevention, treatment, and cure of anxiety, depressive, obsessive-compulsive, and trauma-related disorders through education, practice, and research.
For parents whose children, between ages 3-20, are struggling with learning and attention issues.
Depression and Bipolar Support Alliance (DBSA)
The leading peer-directed national organization focusing on the two most prevalent mental health conditions, depression and bipolar disorder.
A USAID project, Youth Power seeks to improve the capacity of youth-led and youth-serving institutions through evidence-based positive youth development.
Families Together in New York State
A statewise, parent-governed, non-profit organization representing families of children with social, emotional, behavioral and cross-system challenges.
National Alliance on Mental Illness
The nation’s largest grassroots mental health organization aiming to raise awareness and provide support and education.
Sesame Street Workshop Parent’s Guide to Helping Children Cope with Stress – Toolkits
A selection of toolkits and guides for parents to address behavioral health and wellness issues.
Ages and Stages
These resources are designed to support children and families in reaching certain milestones at different ages and stages.
A nationwise initiative aimed at communities with children ages 2 to 5, offering families ways to manage common challenges, to simplify everyday activities, and to grow connections.
Tips for helping children to develop age-appropriate cognitive and motor skills.
Tips for parents and educators on helping children develop the self-expression and self-confidence to manage challenges.
Website for teens, parents, professionals that includes information on drugs of abuse and their interactions with medications.
Mayo Clinic – “Not My Kid: What Parents Should Know About Teen Suicide” Video
Teens describe common signs of suicidality, and provide tips for communication and directing to support and safety.
American Psychiatric Association – “13 Mental Health Questions About 13 Reasons Why” Article
The APA offers answers to common questions and concerns regarding bullying, depression, trauma and suicide brought up by the Netflix show, “13 Reasons Why.”
American Foundation for Suicide Prevention – Mental Health for Parents Having conversations with Young Adults
Videos, guides, and other resources for parents.
The Jed Foundation and Suicide Awareness Voices of Education – “13 Reasons Why Talking Points”
Guidance on relating to the show the Netflix show, “13 Reasons Why” and issues of suicidality.
Parents and Family Members
Make sure your child’s physician and other staff in the primary care practice know about Project
Download and print a Project TEACH flyer to give to your physician.