The UN organization recommends that parents express their care, love, and support for their children during the global pandemic.
Marrakech – The United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) is providing psychological advice from individual experts and organizations to parents hoping to help their children maintain a balanced mental state during the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) crisis.
UNICEF published the article on psychological support for children on March 22, with recommendations based on the work of expert adolescent psychologist Dr. Lisa Damour.
UNICEF encourages parents to express their love and support for children during the current lockdown.
“If your child has been faced with school closures, canceled events, or separation from friends, they are going to need to feel loved and supported now more than ever,” the organization specified.
UNICEF outlines various ways for parents to help children during the COVID-19 crisis, suggesting proactive conversations about symptoms and prevention measures and sticking to a daily routine.
“I would strongly recommend that parents make sure that there’s a schedule for the day — that can include playtime where a kid can get on their phone and connect with their friends, but it also should have technology-free time and time set aside to help around the house,” writes Dr. Damour on behalf of UNICEF.
The psychologist adds that parents should let their children express their negative emotions about the crisis, while “balancing talking about feelings with finding distractions, and [allowing] distractions when kids need relief from feeling very upset.”
Meanwhile, UNICEF urges parents to make sure all COVID-19 information children encounter is credible, recommending sources such World Health Organization (WHO) for news and asking questions.
UNICEF finally suggests that parents monitor their own behavior during the crisis.
“I would ask parents to do what they can to manage their anxiety in their own time and to not overshare their fears with their children,” says Dr. Damour.
Around 330,00 cases of COVID-19 have been confirmed worldwide, including 14,443 deaths. However, 96,958 patients, or 87% of inactive cases, have recovered from the disease.
There are currently 218,223 active cases around the world, with 95% of patients being in mild condition.