Reconnecting With Our Emotional and Spiritual Wellbeing: A Cure for The Adolescent Mental Health Crisis

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Children in the United States are in the midst of a severe mental and physical health crisis. Recently, a study published by the Pediatrics Journal showed a sharp increase in the number of children visiting hospital emergency rooms due to suicidal thoughts. In 2021, a children’s hospital in Colorado saw such a drastic influx in patients seeking mental health care they declared a state of emergency. Meanwhile, adolescent gun violence in America has climbed to an all-time high; tragic events like the six-year-old child who shot his teacher have gripped and shocked our nation.

As much as American youth are in a state of emotional crisis, they are in an equally dire physical health crisis. The CDC unveiled some shocking childhood obesity statistics: a staggering 14.7 million children and adolescents suffer from obesity, leading to heart, joint, social development, and emotional problems. Now, one physical therapist believes the key to treating America’s youth is to empower children to reconnect with their spirituality, empathy, and emotions.

A licensed physical therapist with a 16-year career, ​Dr. Viktor Paul Giangrasso has developed a program that teaches children and parents how to quell psychological and physical health problems by reconnecting to inner empathy and mindfulness. The system is called R2E (reconnect to empower), and it uses breathing, meditation, and other holistic, science-backed tactics to eradicate the childhood obesity epidemic, childhood depression, adolescent violence, and other problems that jeopardize our nation’s health.

The scientific community has long known how vital meditation and mindfulness are for ensuring proper brain health. In R2E, Dr. Giangrasso uses this same science to ensure healthy emotional development.

“​Pharmacological interventions mask symptoms and do not facilitate long-term healing,”Giangrasso notes. Rather than address root causes, Giangrasso believes “traditional mental health counseling generally does not incorporate somatic aspects of mental health.”

Instead of masking emotional problems with copious medicine, R2E heals the root issue to ultimately reduce depression prevalence and other health problems in children. Through meditation, breathing techniques, correct posture, and affirmations, the body reconnects to its mind and spirit to relieve emotional and physical turmoil.

As a survivor of his own mental health problems, Giangrasso is no stranger to traditional psychiatric care and how successful you can be once you break from the norm. After decades of battling depression and suicidal ideation, then undergoing two decades of therapy, hospitalizations, and psychotropic medications, Giangrasso uncovered the core reason for his depression. “It was not a genetic ‘chemical imbalance’ as I was told, but rather persistent childhood emotional neglect,” he says“I decided that it was time to take control of my health and find a way to heal from the inside. I gradually went off the medications and incorporated my clinical, educational, reflective, and spiritual experiences to reconnect myself,” he says.

N​ow Giangrasso is on a mission to reconnect children through holistic medicine to reduce depression rates, improve childhood obesity rates, and relieve America’s mental health crisis and gun violence epidemic. Through R2E, Giangrasso hopes to equip children with the tools they need to face their issues and to empower them with a positive vision for their life. Once we heal from the inside, Giangrasso says, children will become unstoppable.


R2E (reconnect to empower) is a cutting-edge treatment program that helps children and parents reconnect to better health by using a variety of scientifically proven tools and holistic practices, like mediation, breathing techniques, and other natural methods. Ultimately, R2E teaches children how to heal your body with meditation, posture, and breathing for a safer, healthier world. The program is designed and run by author and physical therapist Dr. Viktor Paul Giangrasso. For more information on R2E, visit


Dr. Viktor Paul Giangrasso
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