An evidence-based practice called Emotional Freedom Techniques (EFT) is an effective tool for treating various mental health conditions such as, but not limited to, anxiety, depression, and post-traumatic stress disorder.
You have probably seen or heard about EFT tapping and its importance in helping children deal with mental health issues. As our goal is to help you improve your parenting skills, specifically concerning your child's mental health, we'll discuss this technique in tempering your child's anxiety or other conditions.
EFT tapping is an excellent technique for adults and children
EFT tapping is a technique based on ancient principles combined with cognitive behavioral principles wherein we tap along meridians known to calm the body.
These are acupressure points, and we use statements that address our negative thoughts. So we're addressing all those runaway thoughts. And we've observed that it's easy for people, especially children, to get into a flight or freeze mode.
I like this technique as I've used it for several years, even before it became a well-known tool. It's an excellent technique for us as adults and, most significantly, for kids.
How EFT tapping works
EFT tapping works by being incorporated therapeutically into psychotherapy. EFT tapping helps me when I feel triggered or anxious. It's easy to use on your own, and you can do it anytime you need it.
It can be performed on your tapping sequences or use EFT tapping with a professional EFT practitioner. It works by stimulating acupressure points in your body, relieving stress, depression, anxiety, and other psychological disorders.
Moreover, it's free and accessible to everyone. However, it's like a treadmill that you have in your basement, and you got your workout clothes on. It will only work if you get on it.
First, you want to pick one issue, thought, and stressor. Then, what you're going to do is to check on your subjective units of distress scale (SUDS) and gauge where your or your child's stress level is at. Then, after doing three rounds, we recheck our levels because we want to make sure it goes down.
If it doesn't get to a more comfortable level, you will keep doing it until you can do that. Then, you do another three rounds and keep going until you can regulate yourself.
However, level three or four is manageable. For kids on the spectrum, you must tell them that even one point down is good. Show them that they're getting some relief.
Even though I have this worry, it's going to be okay
The process might be awkward for some, and that's understandable. However, even when I conduct EFT tapping with some of my patients, I'm not too fond of the awkwardness that sometimes comes with it.
The setup statement usually starts with reassuring the patient that it will be okay even though they are worried or scared about something. It mainly applies to children who, more often than not, like to be reassured that everything will be okay.
With EFT tapping, you acknowledge the child's anxiety and ask how stressed or worried they are based on the SUDS level. If the child is at such a young age, you can make one point which could be a karate chop point.
It may get a little uncomfortable but rest assured that your children will feel better afterward. That's what SUDS is all about. It's similar to the process of neurofeedback therapy, which may also cause discomfort. Still, it has a significant impact on one's brain function and is effective in treating mental health problems.
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