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How Can I Help My Teen Get Through COVID-19 Anxiety?

Many people are struggling with anxiety at this time due to COVID-19, whether they or their loved ones are high-risk for contracting more severe forms of the coronavirus, or due to economic concerns. While adults may have the tools to manage their anxiety, teenagers are also experiencing high levels of anxiety and need the help of their parents to effectively manage their mental health.

As anxiety is one of the common issues teens at Sundance Canyon Academy have struggled with prior to attending our program, we wanted to recommend a number of strategies you can implement to help your teen get through their COVID-19 anxiety.

Help Your Teen Unplug From Social Media

One of the first things you should do is to help your teen unplug from social media. While social media can help your teen connect with family and friends, too much time spent scrolling online can amplify your teen’s feelings of anxiety.

So that your teen doesn’t feel like it is a punishment, you may want to institute social media-free times, such as at meals or a couple of hours before bed. That way, not only your teen can unplug from the constant onslaught of coronavirus news, but you can get a break too.

Go Over COVID-19 Best Practices

There is a startling amount of bad information surrounding COVID-19, from conspiracy theories to fear-mongering. To help your teen feel less anxious and out-of-control of their circumstance, go over the CDC coronavirus best practices, some of which are:

  1. Wash hands frequently

  2. Social distance as much as possible

  3. Wear a mask when outside, especially in areas where it is hard to social distance

  4. Stay home when feeling sick

By taking practical precautions recommended by health authorities, your teen can alleviate some of their anxiety, knowing they are doing all they can to prevent getting sick.

Be Appropriately Upfront About Family Finances

Millions of Americans have been financially impacted by COVID-19, which can be a source of anxiety for your teen. While full disclosure about the family finances may not be appropriate, you can discuss in general terms how the family stands. This step can be especially important if your household has experienced layoffs or furloughs.

Also, it can help to talk about how the family can work together to save money, such as taking turns making meals, cutting down on subscriptions, and other cost-saving measures. By helping your teen find actionable ways to contribute to the household, you can help reduce their financial concerns.

Refocus Their Attention To New Hobbies