Boy on playground with mask on

With tons of information on the internet and social media around novel coronavirus (COVID-19), you want to make sure your children have the accurate prevention information and facts.

Helping children understand and make sense of what they hear and read will help minimize anxiety or fear they may be feeling.

Find Out What Your Child Knows

This will give you a chance to learn if they're hearing the wrong information and an opportunity to address it.

Be Honest

Don't ignore their concerns. Give information that is truthful and age-appropriate.

For older children, talk together about what they are hearing on the news and correct any misinformation or rumors you may hear.

If your child asks a question you don't know the answer to, research it together. Remember to check the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention website for up-to-date, reliable information. For state and local updates. visit https://coronavirus.maryland.gov/. And this site has a wealth of information on the facts about coronavirus including:

Remain Calm and Reassuring

Keep in mind that children will react to and follow your verbal and non-verbal reactions.

Speak calmly and reassuringly, and try not to seem upset.

Remind children that researchers and doctors are learning as much as they can, as quickly as they can, about the virus and are taking steps to keep everyone safe.

Children respond to stress differently. Some common signs and behaviors to look out for are:

  • Excessive irritation
  • Returning to behaviors they have outgrown
  • Trouble sleeping or difficulty with attention and concentration

Monitor TV Viewing and Social Media

Consider reducing the amount of screen time focused on COVID-19. Too much information on one topic can lead to anxiety.

Watch the news with your kids so you can filter what they hear. Keep young children away from frightening images they may see on TV, social media and computers. Learn more about how to stay well while staying in.

More Tips for Talking With Kids about the Pandemic