Signs that Children are Stressed & Ways to Support Them

Lisa Cai Community, COVID-19, Daily Life, Newcomer Information

The COVID-19 pandemic is a stressful situation for almost everybody, your children included. Young children are not able to express their feelings as well as older children or adults. Instead, they often show their stress in a physical way.

Not all children respond to stress in the same way, but here are some common signs that your children may be stressed during this difficult and uncertain time:

– Mood shifts: throwing tempers, or not expressing any emotions, not talking

– Clingy: following you from room to room, not willing to be separated from you

– Sleeping problems: sleeping all day or having a hard time falling or staying asleep

– Changes in toilet habits: using the toilet more often, bedwetting that they’ve outgrown

– Other complaints: changes in appetites, abdominal pains, canker sores, leg pain, etc.

* Please consult your family doctor to rule out other medical reasons.

How to support your children when they are stressed?

– Reduce the time spent on watching news of COVID-19. Children may interpret what they hear wrongly and be scared about things they do not fully understand.

– Reassure your children that they are safe.

– Be open about COVID-19. Answer your child’s questions about COVID-19 in a way that your child can understand.

– Help them keep a healthy daily routine during school closure. Make a schedule including fun and constructive activities for your child.

 

If you think your children are stressed and need support, our Therapy and Support Centre provides counselling and therapy services online during the COVID-19 pandemic. To register for counselling, please e-mail us at counselling@immigrantservicescalgary.ca or call 403.705.4382.

References:

https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/daily-life-coping/managing-stress-anxiety.html

https://www.nytimes.com/2020/04/16/parenting/kids-stress-coronavirus.html

https://www.huffingtonpost.ca/entry/kids-mental-health-signs-coronavirus_l_5e7e2867c5b6cb9dc19f37ff