Of many things that plague young minds, FOMO is one. It refers to the fear of missing out and has a big impact on the teenage mind.
Essentially, due to FOMO, they believe that they are being left out of social gatherings. Thus, they get insecure about their social rank, and may even feel ostracized. They are engulfed by the overwhelming feeling of being deliberately ignored, whereas everyone else is together, having fun.
Fear of missing out can then lead to the teenager developing an inferiority complex, due to which their confidence in their abilities gets shattered as well.
FOMO also generates a serious bout of anxiety in adolescents, having a grave impact on their mental health then. When their mental health is impaired, it is entirely possible that their physical health suffers as well, meriting a visit to the Child specialist in Lahore then.
Signs to watch out for
For parents, this state can be extremely distressing. Since an adult brain is different from the adolescent brain, they might not be able to understand what is amiss with their child.
However, there are signs characteristic of FOMO. These include mood swings in the teenagers, alongside a grumpy disposition. Moreover, they also become very sleepy.
Some teenagers may also become reckless in their conduct. This includes rash and dangerous driving, using phones inappropriately, and other forms of high-risk behavior.
Helping teens with FOMO
If you suspect your teenager to be suffering from FOMO, it is vital that you help them. Here are a few helpful tips:
Your child is already in distress, and you do not want to aggravate their state. Thus, rather than pushing them or disregarding their feelings completely, you should have an adult conversation with them.
Try to give them perspective, hear them out, and be present for them.
Spend time elsewhere
The best way to stop a cycle of toxic thoughts, which includes feelings of FOMO, is by distracting the mind. You can thus encourage your child to do different activities, perhaps enroll them in some course if they like studying.
You can also get them to do some physical activity, like kickboxing, which serves not only to distract the mind but also is great for mental health. When you sweat and release the pent-up energy, tension is also released by the body.
It is good to encourage your child to adopt some relaxation techniques. These help in curbing stress in the body, which when runs amok, causes a lot of damage to the body. One such good practice is mindfulness, an exercise remarked by focusing on the task at present.
Once the teenage mind is preoccupied with the task at hand, no matter how mundane it is, the noise from social media and other moments of FOMO is silence. Enter, peace.
Similarly, you can teach your teenager breathing exercises. When we are stressed, our breathing gets disturbed since the body perceives itself to be a danger. Breathing exercises, on the other hand, help in moderating the heart rate and thus, mediating panic as well.
Do not suspend social media usage
Since social media is the ultimate bone of contention, it is a sensitive topic. You cannot simply resolve the issue by moderating their social media usage. It can further aggravate their FOMO; naturally, when they are not in the know-how of something that their friends are talking about, their FOMO will increase.
Help from a medical expert
While social media usage needs to be moderated, parents might not be qualified to handle the situation on their own. You should, therefore, get help from a medical expert.
Whereas a therapist is more qualified to handle mental health problems, for more immediate care, you can also consult your Child specialist in Islamabad, since your child already has a relationship of trust with the doctor they have been visiting for years.