Hello, I am Dr Flo Charles, Educational Psychologist specialising in the rehabilitation of children who have suffered a brain injury. As a child I struggled academically but achieved with the dedicated support of my parents. This history ignites my passion to support children with an ABI to fulfil their unique and infinite potential and so the work of Recolo and CBIT.
The global pandemic has brought new experiences to us all. I heard a metaphor describing lockdown as feeling like “we are all in this storm but in different boats”. So, to help you ride out the storm I have answered some frequently asked questions.
My child’s behaviour has changed, should I be concerned?
Most children find it hard to use words to express their worries, especially children with an ABI. It is likely that the new patterns of behaviours you are seeing are your child’s response to the current situation, providing clues to their feelings.
How do I help my child?
Children want to know that their world is safe and predictable. They also want to feel loved and to have fun, don’t we all?
The key is to create a balance between routine and positive fun time.
Every day do a fun activity together. During this try to avoid questions and commands but repeat, imitate and praise what you want your child to do.
You may want to include your child in the planning of “home life” or in creating visual prompts. Make sure you explain any routine change to your child and give more support until they have learned the new routine.
Include a regular daily time to talk about worries. Perhaps choose a time of the day when you are having a low-key moment, for example when you are making dinner or colouring together. This time will allow you to reassure your child that their feelings and questions are normal.
Here are some helpful resources:
My child is getting obsessive about the new rules
Try to educate them about the larger picture. Some useful resources include:
With one child, I have noticed that adopting a “one and done” routine has helped with hand washing. This can be done by providing a verbal and visual prompt of “then we are done” at the end of the washing routine.
My child is having meltdowns and is getting very distressed?
This crisis can cause great distress. It is worth creating a “meltdown plan”.
This behaviour is very challenging, and it is important that you know you can seek support from organisations such as the Child Brain Injury Trust and Recolo.
Most importantly, don’t be hard on yourself, and know that you are doing your best.
Who are Recolo?
Recolo provides holistic, home and school-based neuropsychological rehabilitation. We are a child and family-centred service, putting your quality of life, well-being and participation at the heart. We aim to make a meaningful difference to the lives of children and their families living with a brain injury. See our website recolo.co.uk or contact firstname.lastname@example.org, COO.