Coronavirus Anxiety? We Can Help.
The novel coronavirus (COVID-19) has sickened people across the globe, and there are no clear answers about how many people the virus will affect, whether it can be contained, how long it will last, or when a vaccine might be available. What should you do? What should you tell your kids? First, don’t panic. Information, perspective, protection and preparation are the best defense.
The following tips are from the American Psychological Association.
Five Ways to View Coverage of the Coronavirus
News reports about a new coronavirus outbreak together with speculation that it could become more widespread, is making some people anxious. Here are some tips to help you manage your anxiety, put news reports in perspective and maintain a positive outlook.
- Keep things in perspective. Take a deep breath and remind yourself that the number of confirmed infections in the U.S. is extremely low. The fact that there is a great deal of news coverage on this issue does not necessarily mean that it presents any threat to you or your family.
- Get the facts. It is helpful to adopt a more clinical and curious approach as you follow news reports about the virus. To that end, you will want to find a credible source you can trust. The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has a webpage dedicated to information on the Wuhan coronavirus outbreak. You may also find useful information from local or state public health agencies or even your family physician.
- Communicate with your children. Discuss the news coverage of the coronavirus with honest and age-appropriate information. Parents can also help allay distress by focusing children on routines and schedules. Remember that children will observe your behaviors and emotions for cues on how to manage their own feelings during this time.
- Keep connected. Maintaining social networks can foster a sense of normality and provide valuable outlets for sharing feelings and relieving stress. Feel free to share useful information you find on governmental websites with your friends and family. It will help them deal with their own anxiety.
- Seek additional help. Individuals who feel an overwhelming nervousness, a lingering sadness, or other prolonged reactions that adversely affect their job performance or interpersonal relationships should consult with a trained and experienced mental health professional. Psychologists and other appropriate mental health providers can help people deal with extreme stress. These professionals work with individuals to help them find constructive ways to manage adversity.
Source: American Psychological Association | Five Ways to View Coverage of the Coronavirus, https://www.apa.org/helpcenter/pandemics | copyright 2019 American Psychological Association, republished with permission
More Coronavirus Resources
- Talking to Kids About the Coronavirus
- Talking to Teens and Tweens About Coronavirus
- Just For Kids: A Comic Exploring The New Coronavirus
Resources from the CDC
If you need further consultation about how to best speak with your child or have concerns regarding your child’s anxiety, please contact our Care Team for a free 30-minute consultation with one of our providers.