Children may feel afraid or anxious about the new coronavirus.
It’s important to validate feelings of worry and not dismiss them outright.
Health experts offer the following tips to dealing with children about coronavirus during the lockdown.
1. Listen: Hear the children out, and as parents and guardians fill them in with correct information to calm their worries.
2. Provide accurate information: Determine what your children already know about the virus and give them accurate information to reduce their risk of catching it.
This might include asking children about specific concerns or what they know about the coronavirus, and providing practical solutions to help them minimize any risk such as social distancing, sanitising and avoiding touching their faces.
3. Focus on Prevention: Keep discussions focused on preventive actions. Set up and praise healthy hand-washing habits, and maintain regular routines for playtime, meals and other activities.
4. Come up with a plan: If someone in your family is sick with COVID-19 or another illness, it can be hard for children to understand. This is where it is important to have an established plan to minimise the worries and keep focused on proactive solutions. Make sure that your explanations are clear and helpful.
5. Balance between Play and Work: Children love the outdoors and playing with their friends but due to the coronavirus lockdown, design a plan to keep them entertained through games, activities as well as focus on schoolwork.