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7 Tips to Help Kids Through COVID-19

We are all dealing with COVID-19. Families everywhere are struggling to make sense of this incredible life change to socially distance and stay home. With so many unknowns, fear is inevitable. For kids, these uncertain times can be even more worrisome. For adults, we can look at the facts, data, anecdotes and try to make sense of what feels like an out-of-control situation. But for kids of all ages, their ability to remain grounded in stressful times can be tricky. As a team, ROCA Counselling can help. Please find some TIPS on how you can support your children during the COVID-19 crisis.

1. The best way to help your kids is to be INFORMED. Know the facts and make sure you obtain information from reliable government resources. If you know the truth about what is going on, you can responsibly educate your family members. Try not to follow all news sources or buy into every story you hear. The facts can help water down anxiety and provide clear and concise information for those who are confused or feel nervous.

2. Kids love ROUTINE. In this chaotic time, try keeping some sort of structure at home. Planning activities or games at certain times can help kids who crave predictability. Remember they are used to getting up and going to school, so not having that framework can add to their anxiety.

3. Screen time is an easy activity that kids turn to when bored. Given how much time they are now spending at home, try to BALANCE screen time with safe outdoor activities, learning, and educational activities.

4. SLEEP is key to a good mood. Try to ensure your kids aren’t on their devices late at night or within one hour before bedtime. Lack of sleep will be sure to perpetuate an unfavourable mood. Try to shut down all devices one hour before bed.

5. TALK to your kids. This the most important tip ROCA can offer your family. Kids struggle to understand feelings, so when a crisis hits, they may tend to sweep fears and worries under the rug. It is better to try and talk to them about their thoughts and feelings. Get them to share what they are going through and VALIDATE their experiences without judgment. REASSURE your children that you are right here with them and also have fears, but everyone will be ok.

6. EDUCATE your children about Covid-19 facts. Remind them that many people get the flu and the majority of people who get this virus survive. Reass

ure them that you have a plan if anyone in the family gets sick and the health care system and hospitals are ready to help.

7. Teach good HYGIENE. Make sure you demonstrate to your kids how to properly wash their hands per the WHO guidelines.

WASH hands often. Cough and sneeze in a Kleenex or sleeve. If flu or cold-like symptoms arise, encourage them to self-isolate. As parents, have your own safefguards in place to continue care of your children. CLEAN surfaces regularly as COVID-19 can survive on surfaces from 2 hours up to 2 days.

If you feel you need extra supports during this trying time, please contact us. Our counsellors are available to take your calls or do SKYPE or FACETIME counselling.

We are in this together. Stay safe.

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