Information for Children/young people and parents during COVID-19

The past year has resulted in many challenges for children/young people, their families, and schools as they have ridden the waves of changes, restrictions and school closures during the COVID-19 pandemic. This has been demanding for all children/young people but for children post-encephalitis this may have been even more challenging if they have associated cognitive, emotional and behavioural, social and physical challenges.

Many children will be missing their friends, extended families and teachers, as well as other important people and activities in their lives. For children post-encephalitis they may have additional difficulties in understanding, processing or managing the sudden changes at school and at home, and access to community activities. For many children they thrive on structure and routine and, as well as the anxiety that they may have felt in relation to COVID-19 itself, the sudden changes may have created additional feelings of anxiety and resulted in changes in their ability to regulate their emotions and behaviour during these difficult times.

Below are links to some general resources that may be helpful to children/young people and their parents/carers during the COVID-19 pandemic. Early years, schools, other educational settings and local authorities will have specific plans to support children at this time and therefore it would be important to liaise directly with your child’s own school and local education authority regarding their own specific plans and the local support available in your area if needed.

 Web links to resources for supporting children/young people’s mental health

  • NHS Every Mind Matters: Looking After a Child or Young person’s Mental Health. Tips for supporting child and young person and for parents/carers to look after their own mental health

  • Young Minds – Tips, advice and guidance on where young people can get support for their mental health during the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic

  • Mental Health Foundation – How to look after your mental health during the coronavirus outbreak including resources for supporting children and young people

  • Place 2 Be Coronavirus: updates, advice and support

  • Mentally Healthy Schools – Anna Freud National Centre for Children and Families – They provide a number of toolkits and resources to support children and young people’s mental health during the COVID-19 pandemic including: Top Ten Tips for Coping with Change & Toolkits focussed on mental health and wellbeing, building resilience, managing transitions

Thank you so much to Dr Emily Talbot, Consultant Clinical Psychologist from Nottingham University Hospitals NHS Trust for her help with putting together these resources.

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