All posts by Nicole Miller

Anxiety in Teens

The part of the brain most sensitive to a lack of sleep is the amygdala – the seat of anxiety and big emotions. The amygdala has the very important job of scanning the environment for threat. When it senses what might be a threat, it surges the body with a mighty cocktail of fight or flight neurochemicals. If there is a threat, this is excellent, but if there is no need for fight or flight action, the neurochemical fuel builds up and anxiety happens. This is where sleep comes in.  A tired brain will struggle to tell the difference between a threat and a non-threat, so it will tend to hit the panic button more than it needs to.

During adolescence, the hormone that makes us sleepy – melatonin – is released up to two hours later than it is in children and adults. Adolescents need at least nine hours of sleep (ten is gold) but they might not even feel like winding down until 10 or 11 pm. Combine this with early morning starts for school, and you can see where this is going to end up. The more tired they are, the more reactive their amygdala will be, and the greater the potential for anxiety.

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Cyberbullying – what it is and why it sucks

Cyberbullying is bullying that is done through the use of technology, for example, using the Internet, a mobile phone or a camera to hurt or embarrass someone. It can be shared widely with a lot of people quickly, which is why it is so dangerous and hurtful.

How to protect yourself

  • Don’t share your private information like passwords, name and address, phone numbers with people you don’t know. Be cautious about sharing photos of yourself, your friends and your family.
  • Don’t respond to messages when you are angry or hurt – either to strangers or people you know. This will often encourage them to continue or increase their harassment of you.
  • Log out and stop messaging if you feel you are being harassed.
  • Remember you have the option to block, delete and report anyone who is harassing you online and on your mobile.
  • Keep a record of calls, messages, posts and emails that may be hurtful or harmful to you.
  • Remember to set up the privacy options on your social networking sites like Facebook in a way you are comfortable with.


Anti Bullying Day Poster Competition

Congratulations to Ruby Sutter, age 7 and Maddison Porter, Year 4/5G on winning a Highly Commended certificate in Interrelate’s 2016 Say No to Bullying poster competition.

Ruby Sutter, age 7 and Maddison Porter, Year 4/5G, and their parents are attending a special Awards Ceremony on Friday, 18 March 2016 at The Concourse, Chatswood in Sydney, to mark the National Day of Action against Bullying and Violence.