It's normal for children to feel anxious and have a lot of questions during times of crisis. Guidelines for parents include:
- Remaining calm and reassuring
- Being available to discuss and providing ongoing affection
- Avoiding blame of others
- Limiting excessive media exposure and clarifying misconceptions
- Maintaining normal routines where possible
- Providing accurate information
- Setting a good hygiene example (handwashing and sneezing/coughing into elbow)
- Communicating with schools
Read on for more family preparedness tools and guidance.
Talking with Children
- The Clay Center for Young Healthy Minds:
- Concerns that young people may have during and outbreak include: Am I Safe? Are my caregivers safe? How will my daily life be affected? View 7 Ways to Support Kids and Teens Through the Coronavirus Pandemic
- For students: Self-Care for Resilience Toolkits
- For parents: Self-Care Tips for Parents
- The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention: Talking With Children About Coronavirus Disease 2019: Messages For Parents, School Staff, And Others Working With Children
- National Association of School Psychologists: Talking to Children About COVID-19 (Coronavirus): A Parent Resource
- Child Mind Institute: Talking to Kids About Coronavirus "How to be open with children to help relieve their worry." View video.
- Anxiety and Depression Association of America: How to Talk to Your Anxious Child or Teen About Coronavirus - "Techniques to help to reduce anxiety in children and tips for caregivers to model behavior that reduces anxiety"
- Maine Public: How to Talk to Your Kids About Coronavirus - Including ways to help young children become empowered to be "germ busters"
- Care for Coronavirus Anxiety: Resources for anxiety and mental health in times of uncertainty.
- National Child Traumatic Stress Network: Guide to Helping Parents/Caregivers Cope with Coronavirus