Open Communication

A simple solution.

A simple solution for caregivers concerned about their child’s mental health during Covid is opening lines of communication. Open communication (from the caregivers’ end) means having honest discussions with your child about the state of the pandemic, and truly listening in order to understand how your child is feeling too. For example, my parents constantly talk to me about the pandemic, informing me of updates on vaccinations and cases. These open discussions ease my mind and educate me on what exactly is happening in my community and in the world.

One study found that parent-child discussion about the pandemic was an important protective factor. Children and adolescents who discussed the pandemic with their parents were less likely to present symptoms of depression, anxiety, and stress.36 Even among those struggling in particularly severe ways from the pandemic, parent-child discussion still prevented the development of more severe depression, anxiety, and stress. This highlights the crucial role of open communication between parents and children.36

I know it can be hard for kids to open up and that it is even harder to encourage kids to open up and express their feelings, concerns, and questions, but open communication makes a world of difference. Open communication is a lifesaver when it comes to understanding and preserving childrens’ mental health. So no matter how scared or how confused you are, having a conversation will usually help.