We are now nine months into the COVID-19 pandemic, and school closures, social isolation, and uncertainty have persisted far longer than most of us could have imagined. During this time, parents, teachers, and clinicians have all worried about the toll the pandemic is taking on the mental health of all kids, and especially kids with mental health challenges like ADHD.
A new survey from Nationwide Children’s Hospital shows that parents are increasingly worried about the long-term mental health effects of the pandemic. According to the survey, 66% are worried that their children’s mental health will suffer even more as the pandemic continues this winter, and 57% say they are running out of ways to keep their kids positive. Research from across the globe shows that kids with pre-existing mental health challenges, like ADHD, are among those at the highest risk for anxiety and depression during COVID-19.
While it’s not possible for parents to completely prevent pandemic-related mental health difficulties among kids with ADHD, there is a lot you can do to decrease their risk of anxiety and depression.
Watch for signs of anxiety and depression and act quickly if they show up. Monitor your child for signs of anxiety and depression. Depression is typically characterized by increased sadness or irritability, a loss of interest in things a child typically enjoys, and changes in eating or sleeping habits. Anxiety can show up as increased worries or fears, but it can also be tricky to spot in kids with ADHD. Check out my earlier post on this topic to learn more about the signs of anxiety in kids with ADHD. If you see any of these symptoms lasting a week or more, reach out to your child’s pediatrician or mental health provider to request an appointment.
Mary Rooney, Ph.D., is a licensed clinical psychologist in the Department of Psychiatry at the University of California San Francisco. Dr Rooney is a researcher and clinician specializing in the evaluation and treatment of ADHD and co-occurring behavioral, anxiety, and mood disorders. A strong advocate for those with attention and behavior problems, Dr. Rooney is committed to developing and providing comprehensive, cutting edge treatments tailored to meet the unique needs of each child and adolescent. Dr. Rooney's clinical interventions and research avenues emphasize working closely with parents and teachers to create supportive, structured home and school environments that enable children and adolescents to reach their full potential. In addition, Dr. Rooney serves as a consultant and ADHD expert to Huntington Learning Centers.
Huntington Learning Center is the tutoring and test prep leader. Its certified tutors provide individualized instruction in reading, phonics, writing, study skills, elementary and middle school math, Algebra through Calculus, Chemistry, and other sciences. It preps for the SAT and ACT, as well as state and standardized exams. Huntington programs develop the skills, confidence, and motivation to help students of all levels succeed and meet the needs of Common Core State Standards. Founded in 1977, Huntington's mission is to give every student the best education possible. Call us today at 1.800.CAN LEARN to discuss how Huntington can help your child. For franchise opportunities please visit www.huntingtonfranchise.com.
This website does not provide medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. The material on this site is provided for educational purposes only.