PEORIA, Ill. (WMBD) — Medical professionals said as COVID-19 spreads around the state anxiety levels continue to rise. Laura Gibbs and Maggie Jones are counselors with Easterseals. They said at this time they want to assist the families they serve.

They make phone calls daily to check-in with families, helping them cope with the world-wide issue. They are also reminding them of the goals skills and strategies that they should be working on right now.

Counselors encourage families to comfort their kids at home. They said although daily routines have changed it is important to stay physically active and to have fun. Adding, it is also important to have open dialogue and open conversation with your children.

Kind of normalizing that this is a scary time and we as parents and caregivers need to be able to take a step back and think about what is my own emotional response right now and in what ways can I model or try to positively influence my children.

Laura Gibbs, Easterseals Counselor

Gibbs said you should be identifying, validating and normalizing the emotions that the kids are feeling just as much as you are right now.