Tips For Easing Stress And Anxiety In Young Children When Your Roof Is Being Replaced

Posted on: 19 December 2016

If you have small children, you already know that any home improvement project can disrupt routines and prompt a host of behavioral issues. Having your roof repaired or replaced is no exception. But there are ways to minimize the disruption to your daily routines and reduce the stress level for your little ones.

Gradually Change Routines Before the Roofers Arrive

Children are creatures of habit and depend on their daily routine to predict what happens next. According to Aha Parenting, routines give children a sense of security and mastery over their lives. When a regular routine is suddenly disrupted, they can experience anxiety and a loss of control. This may manifest with temper tantrums, loss of emotional control, and a wide range of behavioral issues. 

By gradually changing your routine over a week or more before the roofers arrive, you can avoid many issues with anxiety and behavior in young children. For example, if your little one is accustomed to playing in the backyard after lunch, gradually move the time later in the day until you can stretch it to after quitting time for the roofers. That means your youngster will still get time outside but won't be bugging to go out when the roofers are still at work. 

If your little one sleeps on the second floor, afternoon naps may be difficult with all the noise. Gradually move nap time to a quieter area before roofing time. Begin by setting up a comfortable area where your little one can rest. Spend some quiet time together reading books or listening to music together. It isn't necessary that he falls asleep as you are only trying to get him used to the area. Put him down for a nap in the new location when he is sleepy. Because he associates the area with warmth and comfort, he will likely make the transition to napping in the new area well before the roofers arrive.

Consider your child's daily routine, and try to anticipate how that may be interrupted while the roofers are there. If he normally sleeps in and you anticipate the arrival of the workers will wake him early, adjust bedtime and rising time before the roofers form a company like Stevens Roofing Corporation arrive. 

Make plans to Be Away from Home

If changing your routine to adjust for workers at your home isn't feasible, plan to be away from home during that time. A day at the beach, a road trip, or a visit to Grandma's house are great ways to keep kids occupied while the roof is being done. If a mini vacation is an option, stay in a hotel or rent a mountain cabin for a few days while the roofers work on your home.

Prepare Your Child

If you must remain at home with young children while the roofers do their job, prepare them ahead of time. Sit down as a family and discuss what to expect while the roofers are at work. Some topics to cover are:

Noise: Many children are disturbed by unfamiliar noises, such as hammering and sawing and heavy footsteps on the roof. Explaining the sounds they are likely to hear and where they are coming from will often alleviate their fears.

Falling Items: Children may also be frightened if they suddenly see old shingles or pieces of wood being thrown from the roof. Let them know that the roofers aren't really destroying your home and that they will replace everything before they leave.

Equipment: Scaffolding, dumpsters, and construction vehicles and equipment can be intimidating for little ones.  Explain the types of equipment he is likely to see and give a brief description of why it is needed.

Strangers: Some children are naturally afraid of strangers, and having several near your home may be a cause for alarm, especially if the roofers come inside to use the facilities or ask for directions. Letting your little one know that the workers aren't really intruders will ease the anxiety of having strangers hanging around your home.

Outdoor Play: Your little ones will not be able to run freely through the yard while the roofers are at work. Explain to your child that the rule is to keep him safe and assure him he will have plenty of time to play outside after the roofers leave.

Fears and Concerns: Don't forget to let your child express any fears or concerns he may have and answer questions as honestly as possible. You may be surprised to learn that your little one's biggest fear is a sudden downpour that will soak his room or that wild animals can climb through the roof and get inside your home.

With a little preparation and planning, you can alleviate your child's stress and anxiety while the roofers repair or replace your roof.