COVID and ANXIETY in CHILDREN

According to the CDC we are seeing an increase in children with Anxiety since COVID-19 has invaded our country.  Be on the lookout for behavior changes in children and teens.

Image courtesy of Nami.org

A few of the symptoms to watch for are as follows:

  • Excessive crying or irritation
  • Return to behaviors they have outgrown (bedwetting, toileting accidents)
  • Excessive worry or sadness
  • Unhealthy eating or sleeping habits
  • Irritability and “acting out” behaviors in teens
  • Poor school performance or avoiding school
  • Difficulty with attention and concentration
  • Avoidance of activities enjoyed in the past
  • Unexplained headaches or body pain
  • Use of alcohol, tobacco or drugs

Ways to Support Your Child:

  1. Answer questions and share facts about COVID-19 in a way they can understand
  2. Reassure your child that they are safe. Let them know that it is OK to feel upset.
  3. Limit exposure to news coverage including social media.
  4. Keep up with regular routines: learning activities, fun, relaxation
  5. Be a role model – get plenty of sleep, eat healthy, exercise, connect with friends  and family. Children act and react as they see their parents behavior.

Janet Swenson, RN, MBA

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