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Experts say COVID-19 could have long term affect on children’s development

Local News

HARLINGEN, Texas – COVID-19 could have a long term affect on children’s social skills as millions are forced to keep learning from home.

Instead of enjoying a care-free summer and shopping for back to school, kids are left coping with the crisis.

“I’ve seen that kids have really had a hard time with understanding why everything is so different. A lot of them are feeling overwhelmed,” said Sara Robertson, Child Life Specialist at Valley Baptist.

She said kids may start acting aggressive the longer they’re away from friends and school.

“When kids have big emotions inside that they don’t know what to do with, it’s going to come out in a way that doesn’t look good and that we as parents don’t like. Stop for a minute, connect with your kid. Maybe get out a toy that they like, like a puppet,” Robertson added.

She said younger kids depend on a structure and require more social interactions in comparison to teens who have access to social media and other ways to connect with friends.

“Play is the biggest way that kids heal, that they learn, that they experience the world. We can use play to help them move forward,” she added.

Robertson said this type of emotional experience and interruption in a child’s growth can affect their mental health and ability to build relationships in the future.

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