It has been almost a year since covid-19 happened. We have all been through the huge uncertainty and changes in our life. We have not been able to see our friends, we’ve been worrying about what we should and shouldn’t do…It has certainly been a stressful time for everyone. For children with autism and their parents, it has also been a challenge for them.
Autistic people can find it hard to navigate the changes. Even a small change of daily routine and an unexpected event can upset them and trigger anxiety. On top of this, people with autism who require a lot of support with daily activities have not been provided enough social care, education and the mental health services during lockdown as it is impossible to socially distance. A lot of pressure has been put on the parents and many of them feel abandoned and hopeless.
Based on the data collected from National Autistic Society, where 4,232 autistic people in the UK were asked about their mental health during lockdown. 9 in 10 of them expressed their concerns about how they were coping. 85% said their anxiety levels had gotten worse. Autistic people were 7 times more likely to feel lonely than others and 6 times more likely to have low life satisfaction. Also, 1 in 5 family members had to reduce work to take care of their autistic children; 7 in 10 parents say their children have had difficulty doing their schoolwork and half of them said their children’s academic progress was suffering.
This data clearly tells us that autistic people and their families are going through a difficult time during this pandemic. They need our support more than ever!
We know that people with autism tend to have difficulty expressing their concerns and fears. If you’re one of the autistic people who are suffering with poor mental health condition during lockdown and you need advice or emotional support, here is the safe place for you to do so. Please reach out to us as we want to help.
For parents of children with autism who are also struggling, feel free to comment down below to tell us about your struggles and concerns. Share your stories so more people can get to know how we can support families with autistic children through the lockdown.