COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (KRDO) -- The effects of COVID-19 may be weighing on kids and teens emotionally, and they could be dropping parents hints, but parents could be missing those clues unless they know what to look for.
It's been around six months since students were last in classrooms, and as students prepare for an unprecedented school year, many are feeling stress leading up to the first day.
Because kids in different age groups can exhibit different signs, we asked Dr. Jessica Hawks, a clinical psychologist and Clinical Director of Outpatient Services, to give parents the tools they need to ensure their child is getting attention.
For kids between in early elementary school ages: Hawks said to keep an eye out tantrums.
"More crying, more irritability, and also just an unwillingness to participate," she said.
One example is if you're finding that you're struggling to get your child to sit down in front of the computer, it could be a sign your child may be feeling stressed.
For middle school students and teenagers: Hawks says wanting to be alone could be a warning sign.
"Increased tearfulness, they may be isolating more, so spending a lot of time in their room not wanting to participate in family activities or go out and spend time with their friends," she said.
So what can be done to help students?
"Parents can do basic things like get your kid organized, get them set up with a space in their home, being able to check-in and create a plan with them," Hawks said.
If a parent notices these behaviors persisting for a few weeks, it may be best to seek professional help.
Here is a full list of resources for parents:
- Children's Hospital Colorado
- Colorado Department of Human Services
- Family Resource Pavilion 720-213-1400
- Colorado Crisis Services 1-844-493-8255 Crisis consultation and support line available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.
- Kaiser Mental Health Crisis 303-338-4545
- National Resource: Child Mind Institute
We'll have more on this story on KRDO at 4 p.m.