During my student teaching semester in college, I remember helping the teacher with her classroom Christmas party. A little girl named Emma just sat in the corner of the room all by herself.
I went over to her and asked if everything was ok. She told me she just wanted to go home with tears in her eyes.
I didn’t quite understand why she wasn’t enjoying the festivities like the other children. Finally, she told me that it was too loud and that it made her feel sick.
Why Are Holidays Stressful for Children?
The holidays can be one of the most exciting times of the year or one of the most stressful. So as we make plans to have the best family Christmas traditions, it’s crucial to keep in mind that Christmas can be a very anxious time for some children.
Children who experience anxiety may struggle with the uncertainty of…
- Attending activities
- Presents they will receive
- Whether or not they have been good enough for the elves or Santa
- All the noise of the festivities
- All the family they rarely see
- The change in routine
When you are hosting a holiday event, it’s important to remember that your child might be struggling with sensory overload.
As much as you want them to enjoy the moment, remember that they might not know how to express their feelings or even what they are feeling.
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Stocking Stuffers for a Child With Anxiety
As a child, I experienced some anxiety with Christmas. However, there was always one constant every Christmas, my stocking stuffers.
Stocking stuffers were my absolute favorite. Here are some fantastic gifts that can be stocking stockers for that anxious kid in your life.
#1 Chew Necklace
Chew necklaces make great stocking stuffers for a child with anxiety who needs something to hold in his hands or chew on occasionally. Many children with anxiety find chewing a way of remaining calm during stress. These particular necklaces are also fashionable and discreet.
#2 Pocket Friends
Many children like having friends with them wherever they go. There are a variety of items that will work as pocket friends.
Examples of pocket friends
- Tiny stuffed animals
- Action figures
- Worry Dolls
These can easily fit into your child’s coat pocket or backpack to carry with them wherever they go.
#3 Zuru Tangle
These were some of my favorites as a child. When I experienced great anxiety, that fidget toy helped me stay calm. Also, with it being smaller, it is the perfect stocking stuffer for a child with anxiety.
The Zuru Tangle is excellent for children who love to fidget. It will keep their hands busy. They will also help with hand-eye coordination and fine motor skills.
#4 Beanie Baby/Squishy
Although these aren’t the most popular, a stuffed animal like a squishy or beanie baby can help children with anxiety. They can have different textures, smells, and sizes. In addition, they can act as a great cuddle buddy.
#5 Pop Its
Pop Its are all the rage right now with kids. They are like colored bubble wrap to pop them over and over again. They come in a variety of different sizes, shapes, and colors.
Pop Its can help a child when they are anxious or need to focus. These small, colorful bubbles help keep a child’s hands busy and mind occupied.
#6 Infinity Cube
An infinity cube is something that I came across as a teacher and saw how much it helped a child’s anxiety in class. It is a small cube that can be twisted and turned into different shapes. It is made from hard plastic or stainless steel, making it a durable and long-lasting toy.
The infinity cube is perfect for kids who love to fidget and helps to keep their minds occupied in stressful times. And they fit perfectly in a stocking for Christmas.
#7 Positive Affirmation Cards
These affirmation cards would make great stocking stuffers for a child with anxiety. Kids who struggle with their self-worth can benefit from these cards. They can read them when they need encouragement and help to remind themselves of what is essential in life.
Positive affirmation cards can be so helpful to children with low self-esteem to help boost their confidence. This is because children who hear positive affirmations engage their brains’ “emotional” side. This will also aid in problem-solving, impulse control, and emotional regulation.
What is Going in Your Child’s Stocking This Year?
Hopefully, this list gives you some ideas of what to put in your child’s Christmas stocking this year if they suffer from anxiety. All of these gifts will help keep your child calm, focused, and stress-free year-round.
We would love to hear your ideas. Comment below and share with us what is going in your child’s stocking this year.
Here are some other articles you might be interested in checking out:
- 7 Fun Family Christmas Traditions for Children with Special Needs
- Easy 12 Days of Christmas Activities For Families Everyone Will Enjoy
- Test Anxiety Strategies for High School Students (24 Proven Ways)
- 3 Hacks To Help Prepare NOW For The Holiday Break
- Holidays With Special Needs
- Anxious Children: Best Ways to Help Your Child With Anxiety
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