Keep calm and parent on

By Nancy Kellogg, MD, Child Abuse Specialist, and the team at the Center for Miracles at The Children’s Hospital of San Antonio

The COVID-19 pandemic has created a new work force: stay-at-home parents who are faced with the 24/7 job of child care.   The additional stresses of isolation, buying food, and keeping children happy and safe can be exhausting and frustrating.  Here are a few tips:

1. Try to keep a routine for mealtimes and activities so children are engaged and less likely to get bored and irritable. 

2. Invent some new activity/game. For example, older children may enjoy a different scavenger hunt each day for a favorite toy. There are plenty of websites to explore ideas: https://time.com/5803373/coronavirus-kids-at-home-activities/

3. Limit screen time for yourself and your children.  Social media content is more stressful now and children need to stay healthy and balanced with physical and interpersonal activity. Play outside whenever possible.

4. If you use a babysitter, be sure you speak to references first and ask for frequent updates when you are away. Make sure your children know to call you if they ever feel uncomfortable or scared.

4. Know your triggers.

*A baby who won’t stop crying. Put him in the crib, walk away, and take a few minutes of “time out” for yourself in another room

*A toddler with tantrums. Distract her, redirect attention, and use time out so everyone can calm down.

*Potty training.  Have lots of patience and if it is too stressful for you or your child, stop.

5. Be kind to yourself and others.  Everyone has been affected by COVID-19.           

6. Video chat with friends and family or try a hotline: Counselors are available 24 hours a day at Childhelp’s National Child Abuse Hotline: 1-809.4.A.CHILD

To report suspected child abuse: 1-800-252-5400

Author: The Children's Hospital of San Antonio

The Children’s Hospital of San Antonio is the first freestanding hospital in San Antonio solely dedicated to the care of children. Located in the heart of downtown San Antonio, The Children’s Hospital of San Antonio is owned by CHRISTUS Health System. Baylor College of Medicine, one of the top medical schools in the nation, is the academic partner of The Children’s Hospital with 170 pediatric subspecialists affiliated with Baylor. In addition, community physicians in private practice remain a valuable partner in the care of children in our community. We are a health care ministry that works to continually meet the needs of the community to extend the healing ministry of Jesus Christ, following the values and mission of our sponsoring congregations; Sisters of Charity of the Incarnate Word of Houston and San Antonio, as well as our newest sponsoring congregation, the Sisters of the Holy Family of Nazareth.

Leave a Reply. We encourage users of all ages to read, share and comment on our blog. We greatly appreciate all feedback, but would ask that users avoid using offensive language or materials when posting here. Posts containing offensive language or obscene or inappropriate content may be removed. Thank you for your help in keeping our blog a place where everyone can gather safely!

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: