We are experiencing snow and cold in the United States that we haven't seen in quite some time. For many it will be their first white Christmas they've seen in years or have ever seen at all. Outside of the holiday break, all of this cold and snow brings another unexpected break called, The Snow Day.
Snow days can be a source of excitement for students, who get a break from their usual routine and the opportunity to play in the snow. As a kid, some of my most fond memories were waking up early, looking at the news scroll like I was an expected first round NFL draft pick. Just waiting for my school to show up as, class canceled. I would tunnel through the thick coat of white in our yard in a way that would make any gopher proud.
However, for parents, snow days can be a source of stress. Here are a few reasons why:
Childcare: Many parents rely on their children being in school to provide childcare while they are at work. When school is cancelled, parents may have to scramble to find alternative childcare arrangements or take time off work. This can be particularly challenging for parents who work in jobs that do not offer flexible scheduling or who do not have backup childcare options.
Work disruption: Even if parents are able to arrange for childcare, snow days can still disrupt their work schedule. They may have to take time off to care for their children or may have difficulty completing their work tasks due to distractions at home.
Limited activities: While snow days can be fun for kids, they can also be boredom-inducing if there are limited activities to do. This can lead to parents feeling pressure to come up with creative ways to entertain their children or to constantly supervise their play.
Financial burden: Snow days can also be costly for parents. If they have to take time off work or pay for additional childcare, it can put a strain on their budget.
With all of this potential stress on the horizon, how would you prepare for it?
First, you may be able to reasonabally predict whether you're likely to have a snow day by using this snow day calculator. When you're a bit better prepared for the possibility, instead of stress, it can be very enjoyable to spend this extra time making memories with your family.
Another way is with Kava.
Some people believe that kava root can help to reduce feelings of stress and improve mood, making it a potential option for parents who are feeling overwhelmed during school snow days.
Kava root is a plant that is native to the South Pacific and has a long history of use as a natural remedy for anxiety and stress.
One way that kava root may be able to help with stress is by acting on the brain's GABA (gamma-aminobutyric acid) receptors, which are involved in regulating anxiety and stress. Kava root has been shown to increase GABA activity, leading to a relaxation of the central nervous system and a reduction in feelings of anxiety and stress.
In addition to its potential effects on GABA activity, kava root may also have other properties that contribute to its stress-reducing effects. Some research suggests that kava root may have anti-inflammatory effects and may be able to reduce the production of stress hormones in the body.
"Kava." National Center for Complementary and Integrative Health, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, 5 Sept. 2018, https://www.nccih.nih.gov/health/kava.
Sarris, Jerome, et al. "Kava: A Comprehensive Review of Efficacy, Safety, and Psychopharmacology." Australian and New Zealand Journal of Psychiatry, vol. 45, no. 3, 2011, pp. 192-206.
Teschke, Rolf, et al. "Kava Hepatotoxicity: Is It a Myth or a Reality?" Frontiers in Medicine, vol. 6, 2019, https://www.frontiersin.org/articles/10.3389/fmed.2019.00151/full.
"Kava." Mayo Clinic, Mayo Foundation for Medical Education and Research, 21 Mar. 2019, https://www.mayoclinic.org/drugs-supplements-vitamin-b12/art-20363663