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How do you treat your child’s mental development delay due to social distancing?

Before returning to school, the child needs to learn more about body language and more expressive voices to convey information

We adults complain day and night on social media platforms about our lack of a cup of coffee with friends, or joining relatives, terrifying dreams, volatile moods, and how we play 3 roles simultaneously: mother, teacher, and employee, and a lot of tension haunts all our steps, with a level we have not experienced. Before interacting with our children with this close and intensity.

But children do not have a tool to express their current crises like us, even if we pity them from isolation, because science has not yet reached the results of the Corona virus crisis.

Why does your child need others?

A child’s brain development begins shortly after pregnancy, and continues at least during adulthood, and is formed through a complex interaction between genes and the environment, so social cognitive development begins in the first year, to understand what others are thinking, and that stage continues until the age of five.

Play is an important part of that process, as it involves a lot of physical contact and the development of friendships; This helps children deal with emotions and stay mentally strong, and we know that being aware of the world in this way develops skills such as attention, planning, problem-solving, empathy, emotional management, language development and social communication.

The fact that children are socially active beings like us, remember childhood, how eager you were to develop skills like participation and conflict resolution in Kindergarten and empathy faster than you are now; So even if they do not have siblings, their emotional and social awareness is already beginning to develop; But during the long vacation imposed by the Coronavirus, they missed many opportunities for emotional and social development.

By playing a role at home, your child will learn to manage their emotions with you (Getty Images)

Has your child’s mental health affected?

Elena Huntoria Türk, a clinical psychologist at the University of Virginia, discussed the biggest threats to the mental health of young children during a pandemic, and the ways in which parental anxiety can affect children.

There are a number of changes in the child’s behavior that may indicate his harm, and his need for your intervention, such as turning into a shy child who refuses to meet his colleagues on the “Zoom” program, or enrolls in his lessons on the program; But he no longer engages in the conversation, or becomes more withdrawn in the family sessions.

Elena warned of observations; Such as the intensity and speed of the child’s excitement, or difficulty sleeping, or involuntary urination, or his frequent complaints of physical symptoms such as abdominal pain, headache and high temperature.

Signs also include unusual crying, dependence, dread about meeting strangers or leaving the house, unwillingness to do anything they loved before, dread with a parent leaving the house, or the emergence of a new compulsive habit like nail-biting.

How do you help him to overcome the crisis?

So that your child can differentiate between home and the outside community, here are some solutions to help him adapt and grow.

Daily routine

Establish your daily routine to learn by playing and be creative. As if you make folding the laundry a game, and ask him what he thinks about changing his room decor, by playing a role in the house, your child will learn to manage his emotions with you, improve his vocabulary, and develop communication skills.

A routine could include washing hands to the tunes of his favorite song, putting face masks on his favorite game, setting a daily time for reading stories, and a time for snacking.

Set a daily routine for learning through play (Getty Images)

Make Zoom fun

There must be a balance in the use of screens, such as for the family to eat meals together, with eye contact, and keep screens away from the bedrooms. If you are having difficulty persuading your child to engage in a “zoom” conversation with Grandma and Grandpa, the conversation should be entertaining. Ask the grandparents to ask him to find certain things or toys, or tell him emotional and exciting stories.

Let him join you

The fact that the world is very limited is a difficult thing for children, and it is a challenge as long as they do not realize the reason, but the fact that this is something that we all go through can help them with flexibility, and explaining the situation to the child has real advantages. Part of a life and a larger society, especially if he realizes that by following the precautionary measures it will be beneficial for his community.

Stimulate his emotions

Before returning to kindergarten or school, the child needs to learn more about body language, and more expressive sounds to convey information, which may be overlooked due to the inability to see someone’s mouth or eyes well. The home is the best place to practice these simple exercises, by acting out short stories and relying on changing the tone of voice, so that your child can feel his ability to express himself well from behind the muzzle.

Make lessons time hours to interact with your child (Pixabay)

Help him adjust

Don’t force your child into a new group if he refuses to do so. Children suffer from separation anxiety, and they may get upset if they are left with unfamiliar people, and this is completely normal and has nothing to do with Corona’s isolation, and once he becomes more curious and confident, he will want to play with other children, as studies conducted on children who are in the hospital in the long term have found They have adapted and created other ways to play.

Address your anxiety

It is normal to feel extra pressure during that time; But chances are high that you are still a good mother, and in order to continue in your role, you must monitor your mental health. In a recent survey of pregnant and young child service providers, nearly 98% confirmed that parental anxiety or depression affected children; Because parenting and child mental health problems go hand in hand.

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