Noting that the Covid pandemic has had a significant impact on children's mental health, healthcare experts have stated that social anxiety can be a source of concern for students returning to school after being physically separated from their friends and teachers for an extended length of time. On the occasion of World Mental Health Day on Sunday, healthcare professionals warned that children may experience anxiety when returning to school and recommended parents and teachers to look for warning signals such as loss of focus and unexpected anger in their children since the schools reopened.
After being closed for months owing to the epidemic, schools are reopening in numerous states and union territories. Because children were physically separated from their classmates and teachers for a protracted period owing to the epidemic, experts feel that anxiety about socialisation may be a matter of concern for pupils returning to school.
Parents should acknowledge and enable their children to voice their fear, according to Gracy Andrew, vice president and national director for NGO CorStone in India. "Rather than telling youngsters, 'don't be terrified,' or 'don't be silly, there's nothing to be scared of,' it's vital to allow them voice their anxieties and realise that it's natural to be anxious." The next step is to go deeper into what is scaring them. Is it simply being around other children, or is it a fear of contracting Covid? If so, tell them about safety and the low danger of children becoming extremely ill even if they become infected. Parents can help their children by simply being present for them.
Teachers, according to Andrew, can help children express their concerns in the classroom using activities that are appropriate for their developmental age and level. "Providing them with information about the virus so that they are aware of it, and most importantly, allowing attendance to be voluntary - allowing them to choose to come for a few days a week at first and then gradually increasing as they settle in," she said.
Parents, according to Dr. Jyoti Kapoor, senior psychiatrist at Paras Hospital in Gurgaon, can play a significant role in helping children return to normalcy. "The epidemic has had a profound impact on children's mental health, as it has never been before. One of the most noticeable features is social anxiety, as children were physically separated from their friends and teachers for an extended length of time. Parents have a critical part in assisting youngsters in regaining their normalcy. Keep an eye out for warning indicators like lack of concentration, unexpected rage.