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Children and COVID-19 Research Library

UNICEF Innocenti's curated library of COVID-19 + Children research

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Increased Incidence of obesity in children and adolescents post-COVID-19 pandemic: a review article

Sushmita Jha; Ashok M. Mehendale

Published: September 2022   Journal: Cureus

The recent coronavirus 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic has immensely impacted all classes of society, but the effects on children and adolescents are much more pronounced than on others. While obesity and its comorbidities in children and adolescents have always been a concern, the COVID-19 pandemic has proven to be one of the leading causes of health problems in children and adolescents worldwide, leading to various complications. Hence, understanding its long-term sequelae is of utmost importance. The role of physicians in family counseling, nutrition counseling, and diet education is vital in maintaining a healthy lifestyle. The BMI (body mass index) measurements and retrospective cohort studies of various individuals are useful for the pertinent research. During the pandemic, social isolation, staying at home, increased screen time due to online classes, reduced outdoor activities, and more snacking are some of the contributing factors that have increased the prevalence of obesity and further morbidities associated with it. Multiple studies and guidelines are available for combating these issues; still, an increasing number of such cases have been encountered in routine outpatient department (OPD) practice. As opposed to specific infectious illnesses, obesity and its comorbidities are non-infectious, and a slow-growing silent risk; hence parents approach the pediatrician quite late in the disease process. With the emergence of the COVID-19 pandemic, every aspect of our life has entered a more virtual domain and is no longer confined to a mere physical sphere. This sudden shift to virtual online classes has significantly impacted children and adolescents by decreasing their physical activities and social interactions in schools. This has even led to increased use of social media and mobile phone games by children and adolescents, a grave concern for parents, pediatricians, and epidemiologists. A more detailed assessment and multidisciplinary approach might benefit in dealing with the management of this emerging issue. Gaining enhanced clarity by establishing more guidelines can help physicians as well as parents in the management of this critical issue.

Children playing video games during COVID-19 in Spain

Carolina Escudero

Published: September 2022   Journal: Advances in Social Sciences Research Journal
As has been verified, those who spend more time playing video games are children and adolescents. The lockdown caused by the COVID-19 pandemic increased the prolonged use of video games in this population. In this context it is possible to observe some risks of this use, one of them the symptoms of gaming disorder (GD). The objective of this study is to analyze video game habits and the possible impacts on children - aged between 7 and 10 years – gaming for more than 4 hours daily during confinement - the lockdown was announced on March 14, 2020 and lasted approximately three months.- in Spain.
Cite this research | Open access | Vol.: 9 | Issue: 9 | No. of pages: 388-403 | Language: English | Topics: Mental Health | Tags: child mental health, COVID-19 response, lockdown, new media, play, social distance | Countries: Spain
"Everything kind of revolves around technology": a qualitative exploration of families' screen use experiences, and intervention suggestions

Lauren Arundell; Laura Gould; Nicola D. Ridgers (et al.)

Published: August 2022   Journal: BMC Public Health volume

Managing children’s screen time is challenging for most families. Interventions have had limited success in reducing screen time, potentially due to a lack of understanding of the experiences, needs and recommendations of families. This study aimed to 1) understand the screen time experiences of families, particularly during COVID-19 lockdowns; and 2) explore parent and child suggestions for the design, components, and content of a screen time management program. Parents and children from 30 families living in Victoria, Australia completed a semi-structured interview (63 interviews) via Zoom in October–November 2021. Parents were maged 40.8 (± 8.9) years and predominantly female (90%). Children were maged 11.4 (± 2.4) years and 47% female. The interviews were audio recorded, transcribed verbatim and analysed using inductive thematic analysis combined with a summative content analysis approach.

Screen time and its correlates among children aged 3–10 years during COVID-19 pandemic in Nepal: a community-based cross-sectional study

Rajan Shrestha; Bijay Khatri; Sangita Majhi (et al.)

Published: August 2022   Journal: BMJ Open Ophthalmology

This study aims to determine the prevalence of high screen time among schoolchildren aged 3–10 years in Bhaktapur, its correlates and the parents’ strategies to reduce screen time during the COVID-19 pandemic in Nepal. This cross-sectional descriptive study was conducted during March 2021. A total of 630 households were selected for the study from 21 randomly selected clusters in Bhaktapur, Nepal. Correlates of high screen time were determined using a logistic model. P<0.002 was taken as significant.

The impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on myopia progression in children: a systematic review

Adrienne R. Cyril Kurupp; Anjumol Raju; Gaurav Luthra (et al.)

Published: August 2022   Journal: Cureus

Myopia is the most common refractive error among children. The coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic has affected children's health in many ways. Policy changes due to the COVID-19 pandemic, such as home quarantine and online schooling, have been proposed as causes for the increased risk of myopia progression. During strict home quarantine, children spend less time outdoors and more time using electronic devices which are important risk factors associated with myopia. This systematic review aims to assess the relationship between myopia progression and these risk factors in children. It did the literature search from PubMed, Google Scholar, and ScienceDirect. A total of 10 research papers were selected for final review using the Preferred Reporting Item for Systematic Review and Meta-Analyses (PRISMA) guidelines. The research articles used had a quality of more than 70%. The quality of these articles was determined using the Joanna Briggs Institute (JBI) tool.

"Will it work as well on Zoom?" A natural experiment during the Covid-19 pandemic of delivering parenting groups via video conferencing or in person

Livia van Leuven; Maria Lalouni; Martin Forster

Published: August 2022   Journal: Journal of Child and Family Studies
While rates of child maltreatment increased during the Covid-19-pandemic, face-to-face interventions to support families got difficult to carry out due to restrictions. Meanwhile, many services do not have access to parenting programs designed for digital or remote delivery. A solution employed by some services was to use video conferencing (VC) to deliver their regular parenting programs. This study examined the effectiveness of the universal group-based parenting program ABC offered through VC instead of on-site meetings during the pandemic. Pre and post measurements were collected from 469 parents participating in either 1) ABC with VC meetings only, 2) on-site meetings only, or 3) blended – a combination of VC and on-site sessions. In addition, 74 group leaders completed a survey about their experiences of VC groups.
Books versus screens: a study of Australian children's media use during the COVID pandemic

Sybil Nolan; Katherine Day; Wonsun Shin (et al.)

Published: August 2022   Journal: Publishing Research Quarterly
As children’s use of screens increased during the COVID pandemic, their reading of traditional books was affected, a national survey of Australian parents shows. The study was conducted by researchers at the University of Melbourne to compare young people’s use of screens and books in the pandemic. Their online survey of 513 primary caregivers of children aged seven to thirteen around Australia showed that tablet use flourished during the pandemic and that COVID lockdowns influenced book buying and library borrowing in consequential ways for publishing and literature. Many parents believed their children’s use of screens had come at the expense of book reading.
How do Internet moms raise children? The reshaping of Chinese urban women's parenting psychology by COVID-19 online practices

Ru Zhao; Gaofei Ju

Published: August 2022   Journal: Frontiers in Psychology
With the acceleration of social transformation and “mediatization,” urban women’s parenting practices have become an important factor affecting the demographic structure and national development. The global COVID-19 pandemic has further contributed to the networking of social life and the creation of “Internet moms” who rely on the Internet for parenting interactions. Using a mixed-methods design, this paper conducted participant observation and in-depth interviews with 90 mothers from various industries born after 1980/1990 across multiple geographies in China to examine the impact of urban women’s Internet practices on the psychology and practice of parenting during the COVID-19 pandemic, as well as how they were empowered by media technologies to practice motherhood and complete their role socialization through the sharing of parenting information, experiences, and actions. The purpose of this qualitative study was to investigate the changing impact of Internet-based parenting practices on Chinese urban women’s daily lives during the COVID-19 pandemic.
I'm not perfect': navigating screen time among parents of young children during COVID-19

Erin Findley; Catherine A. LaBrenz; Saltanat Childress (et al.)

Published: August 2022   Journal: Child: Care, Health and Development

The use of screen time for young children has been hotly debated among experts. This study explored the utilization of screen time among mothers with young children during the COVID-19 pandemic. The objective of this study was to understand maternal motivation for utilizing screen time and how mothers have engaged in screen time since the beginning of the pandemic. This paper uses a sample of n = 25 mothers who participated in an in-depth interview about parenting during the COVID-19 pandemic. The team utilized a thematic analysis approach to qualitatively code the transcripts. All analyses were conducted in Dedoose 8.3, and all transcripts were coded by three independent researchers to enhance rigour.

Progression of vision in Chinese school-aged children before and after COVID-19

Wenjing Wang; Shuzhen Peng; Faxue Zhang (et al.)

Published: August 2022   Journal: International Journal of Public Health

This study aims to investigate the changes of vision, including the prevalence of myopia, hyperopia, poor vision, and the spherical equivalent refraction (SER), in school-aged children before and after the pandemic of Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19). A school-based vision screening study was performed on children in 133 primary schools in Wuhan. This study was conducted in 4 consecutive years (2018–2021).

Let there be light—Digital eye strain (DES) in children as a shadow pandemic in the era of COVID-19: a mini review

Sudip Bhattacharya; Petra Heidler; Sheikh Mohd Saleem (et al.)

Published: August 2022   Journal: Frontiers in Public Health

Digital eye strain, which is often ignored by the public, has emerged as a “Shadow Pandemic” in the era of the COVID-19 pandemic.  The current paper is aimed at discussing the ill effect of digital screens on eyes in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic.  A literature search was done using “PubMed,” “Google scholar”, and “Scopus” using key terms like “Digital Eye Strain,” “Eyestrain,” or “Computer Vision Syndrome.” Relevant articles were identified and included to support the argument for this narrative review.

Adolescent mobile phone addiction during the COVID-19 pandemic predicts subsequent suicide risk: a two-wave longitudinal study

Gangqin Li; Aldo Alberto Conti; Changjian Qi (et al.)

Published: August 2022   Journal: BMC Public Health
Both the rate of mobile phone addiction and suicidality among adolescents have increased during the pandemic lockdown. However, the relationship between mobile phone addiction and suicide risk and the underlying psychological mechanisms remains unknown. This study examined the associations between mobile phone addiction in adolescents during the first month of lockdown and the suicide risk in the subsequent five months. A two-wave short-term longitudinal web-based survey was conducted on 1609 senior high school students (mean age = 16.53 years, SD = 0.97 years; 63.5% female). At Time 1 (T1), the severity of mobile phone addiction and basic demographic information was collected from Feb 24 to 28, 2020 in Sichuan Province, China (at the pandemic’s peak). Five months later, between July 11 and July 23 (Time 2, T2), mobile phone addiction, daytime sleepiness, depression, and suicidality were measured within the past five months. The regression analysis revealed that mobile phone addiction during quarantine directly predicted suicidality within the next five months, even after controlling for the effect of depression and daytime sleepiness. Meanwhile, mobile phone addiction at T1 also indirectly predicted suicidality at T2, with depression and daytime sleepiness mediating this association.
Graduating during the COVID-19 pandemic: digital media practices and learning spaces among pupils taking their school-leaving exams

Belinda Mahlknecht; Richard Kempert; Tabea Bork-Hüffer

Published: July 2022   Journal: Sustainability
The COVID-19 pandemic has profoundly changed educational and qualification experiences among young people. When the pandemic spread in 2020, schools worldwide were required to switch to remote learning. Through a qualitative multi-method, partly mobile, in-situ research approach, we accompanied pupils in the final year of their secondary education as they prepared for and finalized their school-leaving exams to investigate the following questions: What did pupils’ socio-material-technological learning spaces look like during this period? How did they adapt their digital media practices to cope with learning remotely? How did their situatedness in these learning spaces influence their learning experiences? Building on existing research in the field of digital and children’s geographies as well as learning spaces, through a combined content and narrative analysis, this article situates pupils’ learning spaces and experiences of graduating during the pandemic in the context of family relations, socio-material home spaces, polymediated learning environments and the accessibility of outdoor spaces.
The effect of online education on knowledge about Covid-19 masks in high school students in Jakarta: a pre-experiment study

Kholis Ernawati Ernawati; Fathul Jannah; Faras Qodriyyah Sani (et al.)

Published: July 2022
One way to prevent the spread of the COVID-19 virus is to wear a mask in public. The purpose of the research is online education with videos and their influence on knowledge of the use of masks and how to dispose of them as an effort to prevent the transmission of COVID-19. The research design was a pre-experiment with one group pre-test and post-test design. A pre-test was carried out in the study, then counseling with video media, a question-and-answer session, and a post-test. Respondents were high school students in Jakarta with a sample size of 50 people taken by quota sampling. Data collection techniques used google form and intervention with videos shared online via Whatsapp in July 2020. Analyze data with mean difference test.
"Cover your mouth and nose": communication about health protection behaviors by role models in YouTube COVID-19 videos for children

Jocelyn Steinke; Carolyn A. Lin; Tamia Duncan (et al.)

Published: May 2022   Journal: JCOM
YouTube videos offer a potentially useful vehicle for the communication of science, health, and medical information about COVID-19 to children. Findings from this research showed that primary characters appearing in children’s educational YouTube videos about COVID-19 were most often adults, with about an equal number of men and women and few characters from diverse racial and ethnic backgrounds. Primary characters frequently demonstrated and modeled protective health measures. Adult expert characters (medical professionals and scientists) appeared to some extent in these videos. Directive discourse frames appeared most frequently, followed by the informative and persuasive discourse frames when communicating scientific and health information. Changes in the use of informative, directive, and persuasive frames before and after the U.S. Centers for Disease Control (CDC) announced guidelines on how to communicate about COVID-19 with children are explored
Cite this research | Open access | Vol.: 21 | Issue: 3 | No. of pages: 38 | Language: English | Topics: Health | Tags: child health, communication, COVID-19 response, health services, lockdown, new media, social distance | Countries: United States
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UNICEF Innocenti's Children and COVID-19 Library is a database collecting research from around the world on COVID-19 and its impacts on children and adolescents.


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