Talking to Your Children About the New Coronavirus
As we face COVID-19, the new coronavirus, and changes occur in our daily life, your children will likely have a lot of questions. It is important to be open and honest with them.
“Parents should make sure they are informed on the facts about the new coronavirus,” said Nicole Florence, MD, at Memorial Physicians Services. “Your children will hear or see information from a lot of sources and a lot of it is false. Providing them with the correct information can help reassure your entire family.”
Here are some ways to provide reassurance and information to your children:
- Get the facts to better inform others. Get information from reputable sources like the World Health Organization (WHO), the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the Illinois Department of Public Health, your local health department and Memorial Health System’s COVID-19 information
- Keep the conversation going. Keep talking with your children and be honest with them. Avoid overwhelming your children with information. Address their questions and answer them with easy-to-understand language.
- Calm yourself first. If you’re feeling panicked or anxious, it’s best to take time to calm your own worries and anxieties first.
- Keep a regular schedule. Vacations are canceled. Sports centers are closed. If schools or daycares are closed, structure is important. Make sure your children have regularly scheduled activities at home and planned mealtimes.
- Set an example. Your children will mimic your behavior. If you practice preventive measures like handwashing and social distancing, it will help them to learn and understand how important it is.
Learn more about the new coronavirus and children.
The CDC offers helpful information for parents about the new coronavirus and children.
Need to talk?
Memorial Behavioral Health has counselors who can help you with emotional wellness. Find the location nearest you.