Best ways to support your child’s mental health as they return to school during Covid-19

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Best ways to support your child’s mental health as they return to school during Covid-19

Recently, I have been reading a lot of ‘return to school during Covid-19’ debates where some parents have decided they will not be sending their kids to school and will stick to home school while others will be sending their kids to private schools.

I see a lot of anxiety due to Covid-19 and as a parent you cannot help but worry. One thing for certain is that if our stress and anxieties are not effectively managed, it will spill over to our kids and those around us.

COVID-19 is probably one of the most significant disasters witnessed by everyone and most especially the younger generation. Thousands of innocent lives around the world been lost , the economy of all countries destroyed, and a large number of people now live in fear, depression and anxiety.

In almost every country, schools were shut down for months to prevent the coronavirus from spreading amongst children.

Recommended Read: Tips and exercises to manage childhood stress

Even though it was a good step taken by the governments of the world, it might be a bit anxious and scary for our kids to go back to school after 6 months. The aim of this post to provide you with the best ways to support your child’s mental health as they return to school during Covid-19.

Children worldwide are going through a lot of mixed feelings about going back to school. Some are looking forward to and very excited to be able to see their friends and teachers, others might be feeling a bit anxious, confused, or frightened.

Please read the article further to understand the common problems and some possible solutions regarding your child’s return to schools during Covid-19.

Child feeling Nervous:

Being nervous is a very familiar feeling for everyone, especially for children. This is common when they are about to start a new school year after a long vacation. We have all experienced the anxiety of moving into a new class and our kids have got that to worry about in addition to the added pressure of this Covid-19 pandemic.

Read: Techniques to bring meditation closer to kids

Even though online classes were going on in most schools, the sense of not knowing when the schools will reopen gave our children a bit of a weird and scary feeling.

The best way to deal with children’s nervousness is to have an open conversation about Covid-19 and its effects. Sit down with them, ask what bothers or makes them nervous, and try to clear all their doubts and misconceptions.

Having an open conversation with our kids can solve many of our problems, and this is particularly important this year because we should not just be stressing about their education because their mental health is far more important too.

Necessary precautions for kids to stay safe:

Even though the schools are re-opening again, the coronavirus is still a significant threat to our lives. Children must be taught the necessary precautions that can keep them and everyone safe.

It can be quickly done by having a fun casual conversation in which you teach them some handwashing techniques, catch a cough/sneeze with their elbow, or tissue and bin it immediately and wash their hands. This will help our kids to stay safe and healthy.

Recommended: Hygiene and personal care during self-isolation

How to encourage children to wear protective clothing and face masks:

Your child’s school may make it compulsory for the kids to wear face masks and protective clothing, which for some, it might be a little scary.

To tackle this issue, you can educate your young kids by telling them stories or by using ‘superheroes’ as references and how they wear the masks while fighting the bad guys.

Teach them that by wearing a face mask or protective clothing, they are helping the whole society. If your kids are a bit older, you can remind them that their commitment to act as a responsible citizens is also crucial for their health.

COVID-19 Is not the only health threat

While continually looking out for the coronavirus symptoms in your children when they return to school, make sure you keep an eye on their mental health.

In times when children will be wearing protective clothing, face masks, staying at a distance from their friends, or might have to spend some time in isolation; depression and anxiety can be a significant threat to the children.

Kids do not have much awareness about mental health, they do not know how to express their feelings and this might come out in rude and aggressive behaviours. Staying silent and skipping meals can also be an obvious sign of stress.

Read: Tips to help with anxiety during this Coronavirus outbreak

To make sure your children are on the right path, create a friendly relationship and make a fun and relaxing environment at home and give them lots of hugs.

Talk to your kids regularly and reassure them that this time will pass, and things will soon return to normal. Encouraging them to talk about what is going in their minds will also help reduce the feelings of isolation.

These are the best ways to support your child’s mental health as they return to school during Covid-19 I could think of. It would be nice to see yours in the comments section below.

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Yvette Mayemelle Kaba
Yvette Mayemelle Kaba
Founder of UIC | Wife | Mum of Two | Inspirational Writer | Mentor | Aspiring Entrepreneur

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