Fortunately, the physical impact of the pandemic has mostly spared our young people, however prolonged periods of lockdown have exacted a heavy emotional toll on many students. The closing of schools, lack of contact with friends and loss of key rites of passage has seen a sharp spike in psychological conditions such as anxiety, loss of motivation, adjustment disorder and substance abuse.
As hard as it is being a teenager today, it can be equally draining being the parent of one, juggling your own wellbeing needs whilst at the same time providing much needed emotional support for your children. Just as there are "long haul" patients requiring ongoing help for their physical symptoms after battling coronavirus, so too will there be young people needing assistance well into the future.
This SchoolTV report explains the current state of youth mental health in Australia and offers guidance on how parents can best offer support. Choosing your battlegrounds, focusing on what can be controlled and taking the time to reflect on what has gone well are some of Michael Carr-Gregg's recommendations for this "COVID limbo" period we find ourselves in.
We cannot choose what happens but we can choose our response.
We hope you take time to reflect on the information offered and as always, we welcome your feedback.
If this Special Report raises any concerns for you, a loved one or the wellbeing of your child, please seek medical or professional help.
Kids Helpline have also created some helpful resources for young people who may be struggling with lockdown.