Stress Levels In Teenagers Can Be Helped by Emotional Support Dogs


Elijah Lallkissoon

Mental health was something that has been stigmatized throughout history, but within the past few years schools and other places have worked to destigmatize mental health and get people the help they need and deserve.  Majority of these children go to school which takes up most of their time. School averages around 5 days a week, and 6-8 hours a day, so schools should play a major role in helping students deal with their stress and anxiety levels.

Emotional support animals, specifically dogs have been known to help those with bad anxiety, depression, stress, and other emotions that might be difficult to manage. Dogs can reduce a human’s stress by just being around, but by also petting, hugging, and overall touching a dog has been linked to ease anxiety. While playing with dogs, it can help keep children active as well as easing depression. Overall, having an emotional support dog can be a great way for children and even stressed out adults have fun and relax. But not everyone has an emotional support dog on hand or even a regular dog. So while this might not be a permanent solution, having a professional come into schools with a therapy dog, maybe one a month can help students and give them a mental health break.

Not only having a professional come in with a therapy dog can help ease stress and anxiety, it can be an educational moment for students as well. Students have the opportunity to learn about why service animals are important and why mental health is important while being able to have a stress free day. Students and even staff members can sign up to spend time with the emotional support dog for 15-30 minutes at a time so it would be easier to manage stress. In the long run, this would positively affect students being able to work in a stress free environment.