Coronavirus Resources for Families
Mental and Emotional Health

Resources for Promoting Mental and Emotional Health

Girl in front of a blue wall. 

The coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic has forced many people to distance themselves from friends and family members. Here are some resources to help you address the potential mental and emotional effects of being isolated.

Returning to School

Wysa: A Digital Coach For Navigating Troubled Times

This new “Covid Anxiety” app was created in a collaboration between experts at Cincinnati Children’s, the University of Cincinnati, and Wysa. The Wysa app is intended for adults and children ages 13 and up because the discussions can involve words and concepts that might not be in a younger child's vocabulary. Parents are encouraged to go through the app with their child to make sure they understand and assist the child with their concerns. Download the app.

Easing Back-to-School Jitters After a Long Summer

From the Cincinnati Children's Blog, 5 tips for parents to help ease children's worries about returning to school in 2020.

UNICEF: Supporting Your Child's Mental Health as They Return to School During COVID-19

UNICEF answers common questions parents may have about supporting their children's mental health.

Coping with Stress and Anxiety

Video: Staying Well

A video message for kids from Cincinnati Children's, to help them overcome feeling worried, scared, or confused.

Picture Book: Talking to Kids About Coronavirus

The World Health Organization provides a picture book in multiple languages and presented in video format to explain COVID-19 to children. It walks through what COVID-19 is in an easily understandable format, the ways to avoid contracting it, and the common experiences children around the world are sharing during this world-wide pandemic.

Coping Skills for Kids: Calming Anxiety

Suggestions to help children and teens learn how to calm their anxiety.

Mental Health Toolkit (PDF)

Taking care of your mental health is just as important as taking care of your physical health. Cincinnati Children's psychologists Drs. Williams and Zahka recommend these exercises to help you cope with emotions like worry, stress, or feeling upset, and help with situations that you feel you can’t do much about.

Steps To Help Ease Kids’ Fears and Anxieties about COVID-19

Follow these communication tips to keep your children informed and reduce their anxiety around COVID-19.

Supporting Teens/Young Adults during the Coronavirus Crisis

In this article Caroline Miller from the Child Mind Institute provides tips for parents providing support for older children and teens during COVID-19. Article is available in both English and Spanish.

Fight Flight Freeze – A Guide to Anxiety for Kids

This video teaches kids how anxiety is a normal biological response – called “Fight, Flight, Freeze” – that can get triggered inappropriately in the modern world.

Helping Kids with Anxiety or OCD Adapt to Our "New Normal"

Child Therapist Natasha Daniels discusses how parents can help their children with anxiety disorders or OCD during the COVID-19 crisis.

Tips for Teens Coping with Stress

The Division of Psychiatry at Cincinnati Children's provides guidance for teens through its suicide prevention outreach program, Adapting For Life.

Self-Injury and Recovery Handout (PDF)

Parent handout from the Cornell Research Program on Self-Injury and Recovery with education on self-injury, signs to look for, how to talk to your child about self-injury, maintaining safety, and seeking out treatment options

Taking Care of Your Family’s Mental Health during COVID-19

Look out for signs that your child is stressed, and follow these tips for supporting them.

How to Avoid Passing Anxiety on to Your Kids

The Child Mind Institute teaches parents techniques for managing stress in a healthy way.

Changing Thought Patterns

How to Change Negative Thinking Patterns

Negative thinking patterns contribute to depression, amp up anxiety, or make painful emotions feel overwhelming. Child Mind Institute offers these suggestions for helping children and teens change their negative thinking patterns.

Cognitive Behavioral Therapy - Tools for Kids

Learn how to teach your kids CBT tools that can help their mental health during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Mindfulness Tips for Dealing with COVID-19 and Managing Stress

Mindfulness strategies for coping with stress and worries during the COVID-19 crisis.

Getting Started with Mindfulness: A Toolkit for Early Childhood Organizations

An article about mindfulness, including specific strategies and resources for parents, teachers, and organizations.

Relaxation Tools

Belly Breathing with Elmo

Learn to calm anxiety or anger with this deep breathing exercise for young children.

Progressive Muscle Relaxation Training (for Children)

In this 7-minute animated video, learn to relax your entire body to help with anxiety.

Progressive Muscle Relaxation Training (for Adolescents)

Learn to relax your entire body by purposefully tensing each muscle group and releasing it. This 15-minute video guides you through the process.

Guided Imagery

Help relax the mind and body and decrease anxiety with this 10-minute guided imagery video.

Physical Symptoms

MyCarepath: Understanding and Managing Pain

Children and teens often experience physical symptoms, such as headaches or stomachaches, in response to difficult emotions. This website offers information about what pain is and how to manage chronic pain.

Chronic Pain - Reboot

Children and teens often experience physical symptoms, such as headaches or stomachaches, in response to difficult emotions. During the COVID-19 crisis, THIS WAY UP is offering free access to their courses on pain.

Video: Understanding Pain

In this 10-minute video, learn about chronic pain and what can be done about it.

Behavior Management

Steps to Help Kids with ADHD Manage Their Emotional Outbursts

Read the eight helpful steps on the Cincinnati Children’s blog.

Managing Preschool Temper Tantrums

Learn why preschool temper tantrums happen and how to manage them.

Internet Safety

Keeping Teens Safe Online

The Cincinnati Children’s blog offers advice for how parents can keep their teens safe online through a combination of monitoring and teaching. 

Tips for Online and Mobile App Safety

More tips for teaching your child how to use the internet safely.

Grief Tools

Helping Children Deal with Grief

The Child Mind Institute provides suggestions on helping children cope with grief.

General Mental Health Resources

MindPeace Cincinnati

MindPeace is a non-profit partner of Cincinnati Children's that works to improve children’s mental health access and quality, and provides mental health resources on their website.

Soar with Wings: Bringing SEL to Life

Develop social emotional skills through this virtual field trip. Watch the video and try the learning activities.

PBS Learning Media: Personal, Mental, and Emotional Health

Access a collection of videos and resources that support healthy living.

Videos for Parents on Child Mental Health Issues

A collection of videos from FIU Center for Children and Families on a variety of child mental health topics.

Guided Audio Relaxation Tools

Dartmouth provides a library of free downloads of relaxation tools that parents and children can utilized to help decrease their anxiety including deep breathing exercises and guided imagery videos.