Today, Wednesday 1st April, new research from UK millennial parenting community BabyDoc Club looking at their worries and fears surrounding the COVID-19 pandemic reveal:
• Almost half of parents (48%) think current lockdown restrictions are not strong enough to stop the spread of the Coronavirus
• Only 17% of parents are confident that the government can manage the COVID-19 crisis
• Over three-quarters of parents (78%) are more worried about the impact of COVID-19 on the economy than they are about a loved one contracting the coronavirus (70%).
The three biggest challenges cited by parents with the #stayathome restrictions are:
1. Keeping their mental health in check – 55%
2. Keeping children entertained to avoid boredom and whining – 50%
3. Trying not to overeat – 36%
THE ECONOMY & HOUSEHOLD FINANCES
78% of parents are very worried about the impact of COVID-19 on the economy. While 70% of parents are worried about the long-term impact of COVID-19 on their household income. In fact, 8 out of 10 parents have said they will definitely consider cheaper own brand alternatives when it comes to their baby essentials.
Top of the list of money worries for 60% of parents is having enough cash to buy the weekly groceries. Next is the ability to meet their mortgage or rent payments for 56% of parents. Meanwhile, nearly two-thirds (64%) of pregnant mums are worried they won’t have enough money to buy baby equipment. A quarter of parents (25%) are also worried they won’t have sufficient funds to cover credit card and loan repayments.
INFORMATION & GOVERNMENT GUIDELINES
Even with social distancing and taking protective measures, a huge 70% of parents are very worried that they themselves or a loved one will contract the coronavirus. Thankfully, 88% of parents say they are rigidly sticking to social distancing guidelines to combat the spread of the coronavirus.
While most parents feel reasonably to well informed about the coronavirus, one in four parents say they are still confused about some impacts on their family. This number rises to 35% for pregnant mothers, of which two-thirds are extremely worried about going into labour during the pandemic.
The BabyDoc Club insights revealed that the impact of being stuck in the house and not able to see family and attend mother and child groups, is affecting the mental health of over half of parents. While 9 in 10 pregnant parents are experiencing significant emotional distress worrying about the impact that COVID-19 could have on their pregnancy and birth of their baby.
Staying positive during this time of restricted lifestyle and work is important to parents and parents-to-be. Four in ten parents are focused on putting this unique gift of time to good use with their family while 30% will stay positive through virtual connections with family and friends.
SHOPPING & SUPERMARKETS
Two-thirds (65%) of parents say they are nervous of going to the supermarket with the COVID-19 pandemic, while a further 29% will avoid going in-store completely rising to 49% of pregnant mums. One in ten parents (16%) have already migrated to doing their grocery shopping online, a change from their normal behaviour, while 22% intend to try it out. Almost half of parents (46%) of parents are still visiting their local supermarket for groceries, as online services are either not readily available or timely delivery slots unattainable.
Over half of parents (57%) are sensibly choosing not to stockpile their baby’s essentials. Only a quarter of parents (26%) are stockpiling more than a two week supply of nappies. Infant milk formula (21%) and baby wipes (23%) are the other baby items sought after in large quantities.
COMMENTING on the findings of the BabyDoc Club survey, Laura Erskine a parenting expert with the community said:
“In any crisis, it is the most vulnerable and at risk segments of society that we strive to protect first. It is apparent however that those who have recently given birth and those preparing to do so in the coming weeks and months need more reassurance and support.”
“We must be mindful that maternal mental health in pregnancy and new mothers can be fragile. The lifestyle restrictions put in place to help stop the spread of COVID-19, means that this group will have little or no family support during and after the baby is born. A number of maternity units have stepped up their visitor restrictions to include the nominated birthing partner. While the self-isolation required for pregnant and new mums will take its toll when they are at their most vulnerable in terms of hormones, sleep deprivation and the physical changes that occur before and after birth.”
“Now more than ever, we need to rally together and remember that even small gestures of help and support will go a long way. The practical, no-nonsense advice offered by the BabyDoc Club through their social media accounts on Facebook and Instagram will help to reassure parents and assist them as they navigate the daily challenges of pregnancy and parenthood.”
Half of UK Parents think COVID-19 restrictions are NOT STRONG enough”Digital technology has thankfully enabled us all to stay connected so that we may feel the embrace of our virtual village, during these difficult times.”