| 10.3°C Belfast

Close

Premium

Will the current lockdown have a lasting impact on your child?

With school closures, social distancing and confinement to home, life has utterly changed for families. Child psychologist David Coleman looks at the impact of the pandemic on kids

Close

'Toddlers and pre-schoolers can have the bulk of their developmental needs looked after through being at home, with some access to the outdoors for play and exercise'

'Toddlers and pre-schoolers can have the bulk of their developmental needs looked after through being at home, with some access to the outdoors for play and exercise'

Getty Images/iStockphoto

The new normal: home working and home schooling is now the reality for thousands of households

The new normal: home working and home schooling is now the reality for thousands of households

Getty Images/iStockphoto

David Coleman

David Coleman

'Toddlers and pre-schoolers can have the bulk of their developmental needs looked after through being at home, with some access to the outdoors for play and exercise'

We've locked ourselves and our children down. We've retreated to our homes, isolating our households from those of our friends and families. In doing, so we have successfully slowed the spread of Covid-19. The lockdown has been an effective public health measure for the virus, but what about the lockdown's broader impact on children and teenagers? How is it shaping our children's long-term psychological wellbeing?

As yet, we don't know what the long-term impact of the lockdown will be. There has never been an equivalent widescale regime of school closures and confinement to home, with the reduction in social contact that this has meant for our children and teenagers.

The psychological research we can draw on, then, may not allow us to draw firm conclusions, since the context within which they were carried out is not comparable.