Outside is closed!: Whats COVID-19 doing to kids in the long run?
Outside is closed. That's being. My daughters. Go to phrase for the past three months. Outside not totally closed anymore of course, and now that the weather's nice. We want her out there. We want her running around and playing in the backyard, and exploring the neighborhood and just being kit. But sometimes she refuses, and then she says it and I wonder how long that phrase will stick around even when we get back to normal I'm not the only one wondering staff and the experts are worried. On Wednesday, the hospital for sick children issued a report. It recommends that children be allowed back to school in September even though it acknowledges the virus won't be radical by them. It says that the risks of infection and transmission in children have to be balanced with the effect that closed. Schools are having on kids, physical and mental health. And that's the worry that I keep coming back to and I suspect many parents feel the same way. What do we know about the long term impacts of kids being yanked out of school isolated from their friends for months on end. How does that? Impact kids at different ages and in different situations, and how to researchers even attempt to study this. What don't we know right now? About the long term impacts of covert on kids, and what will be likely, find out in the years to come as the Kovic. Generation grows up. Jordan Rawlings. This is the big story. Sir Mr Superman is an editor at large at mcleans at large right now. I guess means at home with the kid I saw. A LOW Jordan. Why don't you start because we're going talk? About the long term? Impacts that we know and don't know about cove and kids. But why don't you just start by telling me what we do? Know and what we've learned over the past few months about what? This virus does two kids, so we do know some things. It's a confusing picture even with the things that we know, but the things that we know are that most kids don't seem to get sick from it when they do get sick from it if they're if they test positive at infections tend to be milder, the symptoms tend to be milder. So? That's what we do. Know We don't really fully understand why it doesn't affect kids. There were theories floating around early on research out that show that there were. Particular features of young immune systems that handled the virus differently. But there's now a range of research showing very different conclusions. Their studies that show that. Children don't translate the virus at all. Their studies that show children transmit the virus worse than other people, Children Research, showing the children transmit the virus, but a slower rate not much as as adults, so it's a pretty mixed picture between what we do, know in what we don't know. And in the meantime we're kind of stumbling around in the dark with kids at home. Not knowing what that's doing to them with doing to them, and then the last thing that I would add about the things that we know. Is that a couple of months ago? There were these terrifying reports out of hospitals in New York. Children afflicted Very rare that kids who either test positive for Co, bitter or or test positive for Kobe antibodies meaning they've had at some point in the past show these symptoms, but there are symptoms associated with a very dangerous syndrome that. It's causing. Oregon shut down in kids, heart failure, and so on. It's extremely extremely rare, but as a mother who wrote about the experience. For The Washington Post. Put it. It's rare until it's your child. And you know all of that stuff. as parents is terrifying, especially, because there's so much, we don't know, but even that is relatively concrete compared to I. Guess what we know about. How this is actually impacting kids beyond the itself in terms of like physical and mental health. Yes, exactly I mean the virus itself does not affect kids in great numbers, as does the elderly for instance, but the measures that have been put in place to. To flatten the curve and to stem the spread of the virus, affect kids in very particular ways and as every parent who has a child or children at home. That the measures are hard at everybody, but there particularly hard on young people who are trying to navigate various developmental milestones in stages in their lives, depending on how old they are, it's pandemic. That is quite unprecedented in the last century in the last hundred years, and so we don't really have all that much research that shows for instance what what it might do long-term to a child. There's just a lot that we won't know until we start to come out of this and start to. See The impact on kids and refrain that I heard repeatedly in that I kind of. Sensed just from talking to kids and talking to parents is that it will probably vary quite a lot from child to child. We and I'm going to ask you about some of the reporting an interviews that you've done but I just as as a mom I guess and I kind of mentioned this about myself as apparent in the intro. Do you what? What's your sense on? How profoundly this is going to impact kids how how much they'll remember of this. Will it be something that sticks with them as they? Turn eighteen as they turned thirty I, suspect it will be in the first month, or so I tried to get my my son to keep a diary in. I tried to get him to write down impressions because I thought Oh, this will be this thing that he will look back on the strange period in his early life, and it'll be this blip as the pandemic continues in his measures. Put in place you know some of the lifted now, but there's always this hovering threat of a second wave, and the possibility that we will return to some form of of pandemic measures in lockdown measures. I A starting to have the very real sense that this may not just be a blip. Oh, five or six weeks that happened at one time that it may be something that that stays with kids. I don't think it's necessarily all doom and gloom in the way that it stays with children. I went into the story. Concerned about things like anxiety, mental health, and so on, and and some of the effects that I heard about those researchers, and for the kids that I talked to. surprised me. There were there were benefits and some of that I see in my own child's life, and he seems mostly happy. He missed the school and he misses friends, and he misses being able to have normal contact physical contact with people. But he's done things. My my my son in the last three months that he never done before he rides his bike down. A downtown Toronto Street right in the middle of the street. He scooters around unsupervised and so in some ways it. Reminds me of my own childhood. Growing up in India in neighborhoods that didn't have a lot of cars in them and kids were just playing on the street. What's it like? Talking to kids about this because you, you didn't just talk to your own son. You interviewed a whole bunch of kids at various ages I did yes, I think the younger youngest child that I talked to was six or seven seven and. The oldest young person I talked to was eighteen, and it's really easy to talk to the kids about what their lives are like, and and how they feel about this time, because for most of them, the coronavirus doesn't actually Lou mauled at large. They don't think about it as this terrifying. Thing lots of the younger