We have previously shared our ‘5 ways to help our children cope’ giving some fantastic tips on how to support our children and young people through the Coronavirus pandemic. However, as the lockdown goes into month three, research from The Mental Health Foundation shows that over a third of parents and carers have seen some negative impact on their children’s mental health since the beginning of the restrictions.

Research carried out during this time has highlighted the behavioural, emotional and physical signs of poor mental health in our children that are worth being aware of.


As the pandemic continues many parents have noticed the negative impact on their children’s wellbeing with misbehaving becoming a real issue for some. Other signs identified are:

  • Difficulty focusing and concentrating - making home schooling more challenging than ever
  • Being reluctant to talk about their behaviour and how they are feeling
  • Losing interest in activities that they would usually enjoy
  • Older children becoming more withdrawn whilst younger children may become clingier than usual


The current restrictions are causing many things to change in children’s lives which they may not understand.  As a result, parents are seeing more anger, fear and sadness being expressed.  Other signs to look out for are:

  • Persistent sadness
  • Crying more than usual
  • Appearing bored more than usual
  • Irritability and aggression. They may even show as uncharacteristic outbursts
  • Talking about morbid topics such as death or injury


As we all know our mental wellbeing is also affected by our physical health and many physical signs can also suggest there may be a mental health issue present.

  • Disrupted sleep patterns. A common issue for many parents
  • Increased instances of bedwetting in younger children
  • Rapid loss of weight and changes in eating habits and appetite
  • Teeth grinding
  • Frequent head or stomach aches

To help you support and talk to your children about Covid-19 there are now some great resources, here are some we found particularly beneficial.

My Hero is You - This free downloadable story book has been developed to help children understand and come to terms with the current situation. The book was developed in collaboration with experts, parents and children from 104 countries. Click here to download your copy of the book.

Children’s Guide to Coronavirus - This guide produced by the Children’s Commissioner to help explain the situation. The guide shows children how to stay safe, answer their questions and help them make the most of this time at home. Click here to download the guide

Coping with Change - Young Minds have created this poster containing fantastic practical advice for parents to help their children through changes. They suggest this would be especially useful for any child going through a significant change such as the transition from Year 6 to Year 7. Click here to download a copy of the poster.