Over the past year, the coronavirus pandemic has unleashed a multitude of problems on mankind. Family lives in India have been disturbed by COVID-19 significantly. Family members across the globe are suffering from the loss of networking, social connectivity, and financial security, and India is no exception.
The recent pandemic has also impacted the quality of relationships between Indian parents, children, and siblings. According to Medium, with more than 37 crore children in India between 1 to 14 years, their dependence on families and parents is crucial for their wellbeing. With COVID-19 conservative lifestyle as the new normal, social disruptions in Indian families are evident.
Since March 2020, many schools and educational institutes were closed due to the raging spread of COVID-19. Children have been forced to stay at home for extended times. Closing outdoor activities and schools mean a significant reduction in extracurricular activities.
Since the new normal has changed the sleeping, learning, and playing habits of millions of Indian teenagers. This lack of quality peer time and outdoor fun has caused anguish, irritation, and psychological problems in many young children. Moreover, the new normal has significantly impacted the relationships between parents and teenagers with more mental health problems than ever before.
Let us get into the nitty-gritty of how COVID-19 has psychologically impacted Indian Children and how families can get involved in safe indoor and outdoor activities amidst the challenging times of COVID-19.
Psychological Implications of COVID-19 on Indian Children
According to New York Times, family violence and physical abuse have been on a rise since the start of COVID-19. The article unfolded the truth that children of single and poor parents have suffered severely due to prolonged social isolation and family issues. Conversely, some children have also suffered due to prolonged separation from their parents, leading to psychological illnesses.
The most common psychological issues among Indian adolescents and teenagers include fear, distraction, loneliness, and frustration. Sadly, with kids suffering from pre-existing or chronic mental health illnesses, this issue has further deteriorated. A research report by Bakul Parekh reveals that admits this pandemic, the mental health helpline numbers have seen a significant surge in calls.
Moreover, domestic violence has always been an issue in many Indian families. During the COVID-19 outbreak, it has also been highest during the lockdown. This shows that the quarantine effects of COVID-19 have had a ripple impact on Indian children. COVID-19 has induced negative psychological behaviors and symptoms such as paranoia and post-traumatic stress disorder (PSTD).
Moving Forward and Coping with COVID-19 Mental Health Issues
Since the current pandemic is already stressing the minds of millions of Indian children, it can severely hamper their minds and body performance. Children and parents need to take a course of action to prevent mental health problems.
The study by Parekh and Dalwai suggests that In the middle of the pandemic, it is vital to check Indian kids for mental health illnesses and teach them social distancing and quarantine rules. Indian health care providers are overloaded with increased clinic visits of mentally ill patients and conducting teleconferences. Mental health professionals should ask direct questions from teenagers to better screen their feelings and emotions.
Children experiencing domestic violence and abuse must contact emergency helpline numbers or gain access to counseling to avoid further psychological problems.
Safe Activities for Teenagers Amidst Lockdowns
The Center for Discovery, health, and Wellness suggests that parents should set a predictable schedule for children amidst the global pandemic to reduce fear and anxiety. This means Indian children should be encouraged to participate in both safe indoor and outdoor activities. For example, teenagers can play tennis or cricket to improve their eye coordination and stamina.
A famous quote by Idowu Koyenikan says, “mind is a muscle, if you don’t use it, you will lose it”. This shows the pivotal impact of physical and mindful activities at home and outdoors for young kids. For instance, Indian kids can start a fitness challenge for doing the most sit-ups or push-ups. Activities like jumping ropes can not only give them endless fun but also help them to grow muscles.
Although some kids don’t have ample space at home to play badminton or cricket, they can do Yoga or meditation to boost their mental health. It will give them a refreshing break from their depressive thoughts.
Moreover, parents should emphasize becoming role models for teenagers. Parents should deal with the lockdown situation calmly and must cooperate with teens to create a healthy family culture. It is inevitable to lose patient amidst financially turbulent times to meet kids’ demands; therefore, parents should learn to become mindful to avoid further complications.
This means guardians can reduce children’s stress by helping them set routines for bedtime, exercise, study, and online gaming. Emotional care plays a pivotal role in reducing stress. Listening to music, watching movies, and cooking can prevent Indian teens from mental health illnesses. And if children focus more on online entertainment than learning, the Xnspy can help parents to streamline their online behavior by checking all their activities.