Self-Care

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Self care is a universal activity that we undertake deliberately to take care of our emotional, mental and physical health. Individuals discover their personal self care routine based on which activities make them feel best.

As an adult, it is very important to make sure you get a sufficient amount of sleep, eat nutritious foods and exercise regularly. Taking good care of yourself physically benefits your health academically, emotionally, psychologically and socially.

Sleep

The average sleep a high school student gets is between 7 and 7 1⁄4 hours, compared to the suggested 9 or 9 1⁄2 hours of sleep each night. Sleep is especially important for teenagers, as it helps with hormones, memory, learning and energy. Sleep is the body’s way of repairing itself from the damage of the day.

Sleep also helps you make decisions, solve problems, pay attention and be creative. Freshman Harry Henderson makes sure he is getting a good amount of sleep in order to have enough energy for the following day.

“With enough amount of sleep I can focus on my school work and my sports,” Henderson said.

How to Help

If you are having trouble falling asleep:
• Instead of looking at your phone before going to bed, pick up a book. According to the Commander Naval Education and Training network, the blue light that the LED screen on your phone gives off can slow down or prevent the production of melatonin, the hormone in our brain that signals us that it’s bedtime.
• Dab some lavender oil onto your wrists, or just simply smell it. The Sleep Foundation says lavender helps calm the senses and induce sleep.

Whenever you feel yourself starting to stress:
• Breathe deeply and make your exhales longer than your inhales.
• Talk to a good friend or pet your cat/dog. Interactions between humans, as well as their pets, releases oxytocin, “the happiness chemical. “
• Take a nap.

Hygiene

Cleaning and caring for our bodies is important to sustain a well balanced hygiene; good hygiene prevents illness and infection from bacteria and viruses. Some basic hygiene habits include washing your hands, brushing your teeth and taking a shower regularly.

Having a beauty ritual can ease stress and promote positive behavior, as it calms and relaxes your mind and aids with depression and anxiety.

Senior Braylyn Little is consistent at keeping a steady and regular skin care routine and believes it is a soothing stress reliever.

“If I put on a face mask, I feel a lot more relaxed. If you have a clean face or body, you feel better. I feel like it is a way to relieve you,” Little said.

Stress

Exercise is one way to relieve and reduce stress, as it improves physical condition, fights diseases and maintains mental fitness. Exercise releases endorphins, chemicals in the brain that act like natural painkillers, which reduce stress. If your body feels better, so does your mind.

Other activities that have this effect can be simple therapies, like meditation and breathing exercises.

Sophomore Paiden Reed says that having a relaxation routine allows her to compose and collect herself.

“Sometimes when I am getting really stressed throughout the week, I just take take to relax and try to do yoga,” Reed said. “It’s nice to be able to do that after going through a whole day of school where you’re constantly going and going.”

Self Love

Sustaining a good mental health is also included in self care. One of the best ways to overcomes anxieties or insecurities is to fill your life with people, activities or anything that makes you happy. Junior Justin Bray understands the importance of self love and taking time to appreciate yourself.

“I think that if you can’t love yourself first then you can’t love others,” Bray said. “That’s one thing I try to do well is be good to other people, so in order to do that you have to be good to yourself first.”

Self-confidence allows you to believe in your own abilities, leading to your success and happiness. Eighth grader McKinley Farese believes that having self-confidence is essential to remain healthy mentally.

“Self confidence really helps me with my self love because just waking up every day and just being confident allows me to love myself for who I am,” Farese said.

Conclusion

It is normal as a high school student to experience feelings of stress and anxiety; however, it is important to know that there are ways you can ease and maintain this chronic stress.

Taking care of yourself and your health can make you feel energized and positive. It is important to have a relaxing and radiant routine for yourself that can distract you just for a moment form the work that can be stressful for you.

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