MILWAUKEE - Finding their language of listening. Health experts say many middle schoolers are finding themselves spiraling emotionally during this time. And as we begin Mental Health Awareness Month, there’s a unique way to meet them at their level to help get their emotional well-being under control.
When kids can't find the words to express themselves, lyrics are helping with Sound it Out - a new national campaign that uses the power of music to help parents and caregivers have conversations about emotional wellbeing with their middle schoolers.
"It really resonates with these young people," Mental Health Expert Dr. Alfiee Breland-Noble said.
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This campaign comes at a time that's critical for kids ages 10-14.
"During the pandemic a 31% increase in the numbers of young people in this younger age group showing up in emergency rooms for psychiatric or mental health concerns," Breland-Noble said.
Big issues are remote schooling, and the isolation and loneliness experienced during the pandemic compounded by the normal pressures of growing up.
"Our data coming out from the CDC for example weekly that shows around 30% to 40% of our young people in this age group are experiencing depressive symptoms and anxious symptoms," she said.
Noble says the collaboration pairs mental health experts with Black, Latinx, and Hispanic teenagers who created songs kids in those communities can relate to, as they face additional trauma of systemic racism and greater challenges in accessing the support they need.
The effort is complimented with tools on their website that provide step-by-step guides to explore emotions.
"We care about you, we love you, see you for exactly who you are," she said.
For more details on the campaign, CLICK HERE.