Supporting Children through Covid-19
Our registered psychotherapist, Sharon, shares her tips for supporting your child’s wellbeing through Covid-19 and beyond.
For many young people, times of uncertainty can create worry and have a significant impact on mental health. Nevertheless, there are a number of ways you can foster a secure environment at home to assist your child’s development and alleviate worry.
Keeping a good, structured routine will enhance your child’s well-being. By creating a consistent environment, you will align expectations and create predictability. For instance, a routine that includes the same bedtime and a bath before bed will encourage tranquility, calm and restfulness.
Reading a bedtime story to your child, or calmly talking to your child to reassure them, can create a sense of safety and open the doors for communication. During this time, avoid distractions, such as TV and gadgets that can pull focus.
Enhancing communication in this way gives your child a time and platform to talk about anything if they feel they need to. Setting a time limit for these activities can be really useful, as everybody will understand the expectations.
By sharing meals together and at the same time, you can encourage healthy eating and make yourself available for conversation. It’s a great way to signal to your child that you are present and have time for them too.
Look at Nutrition
Limiting sugary drinks and food can prevent negative impacts on moods and behaviour. This is especially important at a time where your child may be more limited in the exercise they can do, due to government guidelines.
By enjoying outdoor activities daily and at the same time, you can help you child (and yourself!) to release endorphins and promote physical activity. These all great ways to lift mood and prevent boredom that may occur from spending too much time inside.
If you’re a fan of board games, good news! Engaging everyone in the home in group activities is great for wellbeing and stops children from being alone in their rooms with gadgets. By spending more time together, you can enhance family interactions, bonds, communication, listening and socialising.
Find a Hobby
Learn a new skill with your child. Something that slots into your day, like cooking is ideal and can help you sustain it, even during busy times. So much is learnt during play, for example, reading a recipe can help develop Maths and English skills. If safe to do so, let your child take the lead, as this will enhance their confidence and leadership skills.
The final thing to remember is that, no matter where you are with schooling or how much time you have available, you are trying your best. All parents need time to themselves and the occasional reminder that they are doing just fine!
We can’t wait to welcome you all back to our holiday clubs and Turn Up and Play sessions once we can deliver these in a safe way. You can find the latest guidance on these, here.