Supporting Your Child Through COVID-19

Supporting Your Child Through COVID-19

A new type of coronavirus, abbreviated COVID-19, is causing an outbreak of respiratory (lung) disease. It was first detected in China and has now been detected internationally. While the immediate health risk in the United States is low, it is important to plan for any possible outbreaks if the risk level increases in the future.

Concern over this new virus can make children and families anxious. While we don’t know where and to what extent the disease may spread here in the United States, we do know that it is contagious, that the severity of illness can vary from individual to individual, and that there are steps we can take to prevent the spread of infection. Acknowledging some level of concern, without panicking, is appropriate and can result in taking actions that reduce the risk of illness. Helping children cope with anxiety requires providing accurate prevention information and facts without causing undue alarm.

It is very important to remember that children look to adults for guidance on how to react to stressful events. If parents seem overly worried, children’s anxiety may rise. Parents should reassure children that health and school officials are working hard to ensure that people throughout the country stay healthy. However, children also need factual, age appropriate information about the potential seriousness of disease risk and concrete instruction about how to avoid infections and spread of disease. Teaching children positive preventive measures, talking with them about their fears, and giving them a sense of some control over their risk of infection can help reduce anxiety.

Informational Resources

Interactive Online Resources for Student and Family

Valerie's House - Grief Support for Children

Valerie’s House is the first and only organization in Southwest Florida with its sole mission to help children grieve the loss of a loved one. At Valerie's House, children will know other children like them, heal together and learn loss doesn't have to limit their dreams. Valerie's House programs also provide support for parents and caregivers as they cope with the loss of a spouse or child. We provide our group support programs at no cost to your family.