ORLANDO, Fla. (Ivanhoe Newswire) — The COVID-19 crisis has everyone on edge, even kids. But how your children respond to COVID stress might be different than you expect.
A new study shows children and teens may show physical symptoms when they’re stressed. Researchers in Norway studied nearly 5,000 students between ages 11 and 15. They found kids who reported higher levels of school-related stress were more likely to experience weekly headaches, stomach pain, backaches, or dizziness. Experts say stress can cause chemical changes in their bodies that lead to physical symptoms. Watch out for a lack of emotion or potty regression which are common stress indicators in toddlers. Trouble sleeping can signal anxiety. Canker sores are also stress related. And, some kids complain about stomach or leg pain. The CDC says take breaks from news coverage, get regular exercise, consume a healthy diet, and try meditation to relax.
In this study, kids and teens who said they had lower levels of support from classmates or teachers also reported more physical complaints. If you’re worried your child is having difficulty managing their COVID stress, contact a mental health professional.
Contributors to this news report include: Cyndy McGrath, Executive Producer and Field Producer, Roque Correa, Editor
Produced by Child Trends News Service in partnership with Ivanhoe Broadcast News and funded by a grant from the National Science Foundation