How To Overcome The Effects Of Social Isolation And Lockdown On Toddlers
Remember how the lockdown came crashing on our lives? The never imagined social isolation made us helpless and bleed with frustration. While our little ones actually grew up in a setting where lockdown and social isolation was NORMAL.
Can you imagine the distress caused to our toddlers by the delayed transition from closed doors to going out of the house, playing outside boundaries, and interacting with new faces and peers!
How overwhelming and scary it has been for them to understand what our normal world looks like. While some families have started moving out like normal, some of us are still keeping social separation.
These disconnections have made it indispensable to recognise the plight of our little ones.Forcing them into new normal would only lead to mental friction and a disparaging effect on their phycological front.
Here are some of the common issues faced by this crucial age-group as a result of social isolation.
1. Children aged 12 months to 36 months - This toddler age spectrum has been struck with social shocks. They have attachment with their parents or care-givers only and react unpleasantly to unknown faces.
2. Most of the parents complain about their children becoming clingy or crying when they meet new people. Lack of social norms has led to a phycological consequence where they feel threatened by the arrival of new humans and the environment.
3. It is difficult for them to adjust to sleeping, eating or following their routine in any place other than their homes.
4. Most of the toddlers reached the age-phase of recognising people during the lockdown. They were deprived of any social interaction from outside the home making them psychologically vulnerable.
5. It is challenging to explain the reason for the transition as the toddlers don't have grounds to decipher between the two situations.
6. The toddlers have become clingy and want the complete attention of their parents, which is difficult with work routine resuming for most parents.
7. They demand more screen time and reject the proposal to go out of the house.
It is not a simple ride with zillion things to manage such as work from home, maintaining safety measures, keeping children entertained.These pointers might help if your children are not adjusting to the new environment or resisting interaction with new people.
1. Initiate the transition with a basic level of interaction with the outer world. Start by going on Car rides without coming into social contact with any person. This will let them apprehend the existence of people other than their family.
2. Take them to an open area where they can get down from the car and explore the surroundings (without imposed human interaction.) Let them seamlessly settle into the newly discovered environment.
3. Initially meet family members without crowding and too much hovering/attention over the child. (we know it is difficult to keep away from cuddling with the cuties). Once they see that the strangers are not harming them, they will start interacting themselves.
4. Gradually increase the interactions with family and neighbours. They will adapt better when they see you interacting with people.
5. While initially, they might even resist saying 'Hi' to anyone but trust the process. They will tune in with socializing soon.
6. Develop a play routine with other kids keeping the safety measures in place. Let them explore playgrounds with swings and their peers. Once they start enjoying, the new experiences will encourage them to move out of the house.
7. Interaction with friends and family through video calls can help the toddlers to recognise distant family members promptly when they finally meet in person.
Since our toddlers started apprehending their environment, they have seen limited faces and a secured environment. It has been an emotional tumult for everyone. These notorious little ones are sensitive and tender they need the right exposure to come to terms with the changes happening around them.
Let us be strong and support our kids to make them ready to adapt to the new world!
Super parents! Let us know how you dealt with the new normal in the comments below!
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