As the Coronavirus continues to impact families across the world, it is imperative to ensure that the safety, health and psychological well-being of children are protected. The good thing is you're not alone. Given all the discussions about Coronavirus in the last couple of weeks, your children may have some questions and concerns, and that is entirely normal.
Below are some tips on how to approach the subject and address any questions they may have.
If your children are young, try to keep it as simple as possible. If they have asked you what the COVID-19 virus is, you can mention that it's like having a cold or the flu. Sometimes you may get a cough or have a fever. Most people who catch this sickness stay home, rest and get all better. We have wonderful doctors and nurses who are working hard to make sure everyone gets the help they need to recover.
It's also important to emphasize to them that they are safe, but you should highlight how your family can be extra cautious during this time. Discussing hygiene routines that slow the spread of the COVID-19 will help your children feel more at ease and in control. You can make washing your hands a family routine. If you do it together, you can be the perfect model for them by showing them how to use soap, rub your hands together and rinse for at least 20 seconds. Learn five fun facts about hand washing in our previous article.
You can play a simple yet fun game called Catch The Cough! When kids cough or sneeze, they tend to do it right into their hands and then proceed to touch everything they can get their hands on. Instead, they should learn to cough and sneeze into their elbows. You can make this a fun game for the kids. Can they catch the cough in their elbow? When they use their elbow to catch their cough, cheer when they do! If they accidentally use their hands, simply ask them to wash them with soap and water and start the game again.
If you have older children, it's a good idea to ask them what they already know about the virus and if they have any questions. For younger children, you can ask them if they have any questions about the new sickness that's going around. This gives you a chance to learn how much your kids know and gauge how to approach talking to them.
To be fully prepared, here are some questions that your children might ask you!
1) How do you catch this Coronavirus?
A child-friendly answer could be as simple as saying "The virus spreads like the flu, or a cold or cough. If a person has been infected with the coronavirus, they may sneeze or cough, and the germs that are inside of them, come outside of the body. This is why covering your mouth when you cough and sneeze is so important.
2) Why are people wearing masks? Do I need to wear a mask?
Masks are for people who are sick and also are a great way to stop the spread of germs. Masks are also used by medical staff, like doctors and nurses, so they can help people who have the virus. Whether or not it is necessary to wear a mask is determined by your government and might change in the near future.
3) Why is there no medicine?
COVID-19 is a type of virus, and it is challenging to make medicines for viruses because they more or less 'hide' in the body. Doctors around the world are currently trying to develop a vaccine, but this takes time because we need to make sure it is tested and safe for everyone.
Since the Coronavirus has become an enormous topic of our lives, it is crucial to ensure your children are educated about the subject. We hope this helped you address some issues or concerns your kids are having about Coronavirus. If you have any more tips or suggestions, we would be happy if you reach out to us on Instagram.