Help Your Family De-Stress During Coronavirus Uncertainty

How to manage anxiety, stay active, and focus on your family's well-being.
Mar 25, 2020 1:00 PM ET
Blog

By Sierra Filucci, Common Sense Media

With so much uncertainty over the last couple weeks, lots of families are feeling stressed out. Events are being canceled, spring break plans are being put on hold, hand sanitizer is in short supply. And some families are dealing with school closures, or at least the fear of them. 

During this difficult time, we hope you'll find time to take care of yourself, and your kids. We've rounded up a few ideas for how to enact self-care for the whole family—with the help of media and tech, and sometimes without it.

Manage family stress.
Kids pick up on our anxiety, so it's important to manage your own feelings first. Take deep breaths, go for a walk, or do whatever you need to do to bring your own stress levels down. 
 
Meditate.
We've got apps for kids and families that can help you visualize a more peaceful setting, align your breath with your yoga poses, or focus on what you're grateful for.
 
Get help.
This collection of mental health apps might be the answer to a tween or teen who is really struggling but can't get face-to-face care right away.
 
Stay active.
If you're stuck inside, you'll need to get creative to get everyone moving. Set up an obstacle course, play hide-and-seek, and watch some exercise videos on YouTube as a family. Just say "exercise videos on YouTube into your Contour voice remote.
 
Move around.
Our collection of apps, websites, and video games that inspire running, jumping, or, um, conducting music might be the perfect thing to keep things active.
 
Maintain healthy habits.
Aside from the basics of washing hands and covering coughs, consider using this opportunity to dig into overall health. Here are some resources with different approaches to wellness:
 
Feel better.
Check out these health-focused apps to pass the time while also getting some tips on eating well, exercising, and even managing the stress of an illness.
 
Learn about our amazing bodies.
These wellness websites can be great resources for kids and teens who are curious about diseases … and other topics. Plenty of conversation starters!
 
Double down on distraction.
If you're feeling frazzled, the best medicine is a cozy night on the couch with family and giant laughs. Also, turn off the news, silence your notifications, and get your kids to do the same. 
 
Laugh together. 
Whether you prefer classic comedies or fresher fare, these funny movies will force everyone to forget their worries for a while.
 
Get goofy.
This list of silly movies might not include the finest filmmaking, but for tweens and teens, they tickle the funny bone in just the right place.
 

Common Sense Media is an independent nonprofit organization offering unbiased ratings and trusted advice to help families make smart media and technology choices. Check out our ratings and recommendations at www.commonsensemedia.org