Wellness in Early Childhood

North Carolina can better support young children’s mental health and development

Young children’s mental health is critical to their long-term health and well-being. Mental health significantly impacts babies’ and toddlers’ ability to learn, establish healthy connections with others, manage their emotions, and grow into capable adults. Supporting mental health for our youngest children means supporting their families. Unfortunately, many children suffer significant adversity in early childhood, including violence, maltreatment, poverty, racism, and other experiences that can disrupt their social-emotional growth.

We can support and protect children’s mental health and development through parent- and family-centered programs of prevention, promotion, early identification, and appropriate intervention. North Carolina must develop a more robust and coordinated system of services to support children’s mental health and well-being.

Resources from Our Partners

Filling the Data Gap: Recommendations for Young Children's Social-Emotional Health in North Carolina
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Growing Up Well: Supporting Young Children’s Social-Emotional Development and Mental Health in North Carolina
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Pathways to Grade-Level Reading Action Framework
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More on mental health from NC Child

See the most frequently asked questions about young children’s mental health.