Covid has crippled the world. Kids and teens are getting disturbed. Lockdown has shut all the social interactions, and this has left society with depressed kids. Social isolation, school shutdown, restricted online communications, no outdoor play, and just a few to mention issues every child faces. It is challenging for every person to cope and come back to normalcy, irrespective of age and background.

Paul Haarman breaks the myth with facts!

The dreadful situation caused post-pandemic has disrupted the normal lives of people and led to mental illness. Severe mental disorders are appearing in the younger generation. Kids are getting maximum affected by the traumatic condition.

Several young people seek help for anxiety and depression during and post-pandemic. Unfortunately, only a few get the right help and access during this situation. A study by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) found that children aged 5-11 are seeking mental care at emergency departments in 2020. The worst fact says that there is an increase of 24% from 2019. And teenagers (aged 12-17) have increased by 31% over the last year who seek mental care help.

Symptoms to look for in your children and act immediately:

  • Disconnect from family and friends. 
  • Zero-interest in hobbies and entertainment.
  • Prolonged sleeping. 
  • No sleep or random sleep episodes.
  • Persistent sadness or anger.
  • Sudden increase or decrease in appetite.
  • Lashing out on family and friends without reason.
  • Extreme self-judgment.
  • Suicidal thoughts or behavior.
  • Use of illegal drugs or other substances.
  • Feeling irritable to sunlight and pleasant weather.
  • Reluctance to spend time with family and friends.
  • Being secretive about almost everything.

Paul Haarman explains that these are some of the major symptoms to look for and as for help. Other than that, as a parent or guardian, you can take simple and effective measures to eliminate mental distress. 

Keep a regular check on your children. This does not mean invading the privacy of your 15 years old, rather have small conversations on a daily basis. You can do this by speaking over the meal table, catching up before bedtime or during the school run.

Do not shrug off by saying that you can fix their problems. Show more compassion and be patient in dealing with their problems. Listen and explain that it is OKAY to feel in a certain way. Let your children express their emotions rather than holding them inside.

Anxiety happens when things go beyond control. Guide the children by helping them focus on factors that are within control. Simple things like staying healthy, keeping themselves clean, setting up and routine, and sticking to proper sleep hours are few tips to start.

Paul Haarman insists on encouraging by practicing what you preach. Do not tell to set an example; rather do/show to set the example. This is a very effective approach to stay closer to your children and inculcate positive habits during tough times.

Let your children interact with different generations of people. Invite people home or arrange online family meetings. This would help the kids have a perspective of other people. Sometimes your problems appear small on sharing the problems of others.