Children and young people in the UK are all being affected by the pandemic, not just directly by the loss of special people in their lives but also indirectly in many ways. It is important to recognise the perfectly normal symptoms of stress and changes in mood and behaviour this may cause, and to know when professional help might need to be sought. 

  • The number of deaths directly or indirectly caused by the virus in the UK has exceeded 50,000. This means that many children and young people will have had family or friends die because of the virus. These deaths are likely to have been sudden and unexpected, and the children and young people may not have had the chance to say goodbye either beforehand or at a funeral.
  • Children and young people who have not been directly bereaved, will have heard a lot of ‘death talk’ around them – either by friends and family or on news or social media.
  • Access to social support from outside of the household will have been compromised during lockdown, and we know that lack of social support is a risk factor that makes events more likely to be traumatic.
  • For many children and young people there will have been additional losses and stresses: they may have lost their normal daily structure, they may have lost contact with friends, they may have missed out on various important milestones in their lives, their carers may have financial difficulties, their families may be arguing more, they may be more exposed to domestic violence between the adults in their household, they may have experienced abuse with no-one outside of the household to turn to for protection.

The UK Trauma Council has published new information about how the pandemic is affecting our youngsters. You can find helpful videos and advice about this subject on their website.

UK Trauma Council