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Is Your Child Feeling Irritated From Being Stuck At Home For Too Long Due To COVID-19 Lockdowns?

by on 30/01/2021 1020

It's not just the adults that are affected by the COVID-19 lockdowns, young children may exhibit emotional and behavioural changes due to extended periods of time spent at home.

Since last March, school sessions had to be postponed to curb the spread of this mysterious virus. Time flies so fast, we are almost one year into this. Like it or not, new norms of life should be continued to prevent you and your family members from becoming the next victim!

Behavioural Changes of Children At Home

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Recounting the experience of a mother, Amber Sparks, she realized that her 5-year-old daughter showed a change in attitude and irregular behavior as a result of this Covid-19 pandemic.

"He seemed depressed, started screaming and throwing things around him. He raged like that for about half an hour. In the end he cried until he fell asleep on his own. ''

"I came and hugged him, slowly he said that he really missed school and friends," she shared.

 

This small family lives in an apartment in the city. Previously they often walked to parks, museums, schools, restaurants and bookstores. However, due to the Covid-19 epidemic, she and her son spent a lot of time at home alone.

According to a psychiatrist at Harvard Medical School, Christopher Willard, children feel very sad because they lost their daily routine, freedom and friends.

Managing Children's Emotional and Behavioural Changes

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"Young children may feel the same way as adults but they express it differently. They may cry, rage, be more sensitive, and shout and quarrel with siblings," he explained.

To alleviate this problem, parents should help children feel safe, keep healthy routines and manage their emotions. Here are a few tips to keep a sense of calm:

#1. Keep Healthy Routines and Structure the Day

With work from home schedules, structure the day with new routines and schedules.

There is no denying that young children love freedom but it is important to create a sense of order in the day with online learning, quiet play and maintaining bedtimes.

When routines are predictable, yet flexible, it is less challenging to learn and deal with their emotions.

#2. Limit Screen Time

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While it may be inevitable to limit screen time during a lockdown due to online classes, it is still important to create boundaries, when you can. Set specific times of the day to let your child know when they are allowed to use the phone or tablet. It helps them know what to expect and reduces the possibility of unecessary requests to increase screen time.

They might be moody for the first few days but things will settle once they get into the routine.

Find alternative non-screen activities (get some ideas from this article) to keep them occupied instead.

#3. Use Positive Discipline

Redirect your attention to your child's good behaviour. Point out their good tries and habits, and praise their improvements and successes. If they do get out of hand, try to explain clearly rather than yelling and raging. 

Motivate your child with rewards to reinforce good behaviours and getting them to be more cooperative at home. It may be in the form of material things, simple like stickers, or social rewards, which are free like a hug or kiss.

Above all, don't be so harsh on yourself if things don't work out and you feel too overwhelmed. Take a breather, there is always tomorrow.     

Sumber: Cnn

This article was first published on theAsianParent.