COVID-19, the name given to the deadly Corona Virus Disease that has been declared by World Health Organization following massive outbreak and spread of Corona Virus.
Corona virus after originating from China has spread rapidly and has created havoc all over the world affecting large population and causing huge loss of human lives, leave aside impact on world economy.
Most governments, realizing the damaging potential of corona virus and non-availability of any medicine or vaccine to counter the virus, have introduced protective measures.
These protective measures include Lockdown in the affected areas, quarantine suspected cases, use of mask, increased Sanitization of area, maintenance of personal hygiene with special emphasis on proper hand washing and maintaining social distancing etc.
Role of Parents during Corona Pandemic
While world is struggling to contain spread of COVID-19 and find medication, parents and caregivers are juggling with the needs of children who are made to stay home as schools and other educational institutions have been closed.
COVID-19 is unprecedented and has assumed dangerous proportions and has brought with it sense of insecurity, feelings of anxiety, stress and uncertainty. Under such prevailing conditions it becomes necessary to not only save their children from highly contagious virus but keep them healthy and occupied.
Parents are also required to keep their children informed the facts about COVID-19 and dispel every doubt they might be carrying in their mind and remove fear, if any is there due to misinformation.
How can parents manage their children during COVID-19?
As corona virus, continues to take its toll globally, parents are required to ensure their children's safety more than ever.
There may be many opinions and views or tips for parents to help children cope with frightening or traumatic situation yet some of the tips that can help parents navigate through the onslaught of Corona Virus can be:
- Be calm, assured and proactive yourself
Before trying to manage your children, it is foremost for parents to shun anxiety or fear in their own mind. Parents must remain positive, assured and proactive which will help children to feel safe and confident.
2. Keep routines in place
Parents should set and follow a routine to ensure that children should get up, eat, study, play and go to bed at their normal times. You may make schedule that mimic a school without much of changes in activities to be performed at fixed i.e. predictable intervals, while including periods of play in between study.
Keeping routines in place and consistency can produce calming effects during times of stress.
- Keep kids in the loop
As a responsible parent you must keep talking to children in a clear, reasonable manner to inform them about the current scenario of corona pandemic.
You must also involve children and share news pertaining above crisis so that they may not believe so much misinformation being circulated through social media. In a simple manner, children must be conveyed as to how to protect themselves from catching infection.
- Encourage writing and drawing about the experience
Many children are introvert and may not express their fear or doubt about Corona virus disease. Parents may motivate them by engaging them in writing and drawing can help kids deal with what’s troubling them.
5. Create a sense of safety
Children, by and large, are sensitive and may feel vulnerable and overwhelmed easily. It is prudent for parents to let them feel secured and comfortable.
Parents can focus on protection of children by providing them physical comforts like their favorite foods, games and personal blankets.
- Monitor behavior over time
Although change in behavior of children with changing time is considered normal but changes in response to COVID -19 crisis, symptoms of stress can become problematic and hence cannot be ignored.
Parents must monitor behavior over time is need of the hour and changes in behavior must be monitored and if possible you may seek your doctor’s advice also.
However, regular counseling by parents can help children regaining and restoring confidence.
Apart from above as a vigilant parent, you must educate your children to follow certain norms, as protective cover from COVID-19 crisis.
In the absence of any particular medicine or vaccination to treat Corona patients; the best way to fight this contagious disease is to prevent it by adhering to precautionary measures, such as:
· Encourage basic hygiene
Maintaining good hygiene is necessary and parents must ensure that children wash their hands with soap and water frequently for at least 20 seconds.
Encourage children to repeat the same practice before and after eating, after using the restroom and immediately after a cough or sneeze. Also ensure that they do not to touch their nose, mouth and eyes with unclean hands.
· Keep social distance
Your child must stay at least 1 meter away from the person who is sneezing or coughing, use mask or handkerchief and maintain distance to avoid catching infection.
It will be better you and your children can avoid crowded places completely as far as possible.