CONSEQUENCES OF COVID19 PANDEMIC ON CHILDREN WELL-BEING AND DEVELOPMENT
Considering the restriction of social interactions and the shift to the online school due to the COVID19 pandemic, this article highlights the potential harmful consequences of this shift. Based on the results of researches conducted before and during the pandemic, the consequences of social isolation and prolonged use of digital technology by children and adolescents can be serious, affecting their long-term their physical, cognitive and socio-emotional development. Numerous studies have shown that the main risks concern: (1) access to online content: addiction, cyberbullying, age-inappropriate information, personal data security issues; (2) lack of physical activity and social interaction: diseases, altered sleep patterns, sedentarism, unhealthy eating habits, obesity, diabetes, anxiety, depression, suicide risk and low social skills in the future. All these should be further researched by redesigning and conceptualising technostress, a concept used to bring together the undesirable effects that occur for adults who use intensively the digital technologies for professional purposes.
The comparative research carried out with parents in two secondary Romanian schools has highlighted that parents are still confused, while the socio-economic and educational status of the family influences the emergence of risks related to the online content accessed by children, but not the risks related to social isolation and prolonged use of technology by children.
Keywords: COVID19 pandemic, online school, children physical and psychological health, technostress.