Home quarantines and cumulative risk exposure among young children: Isolation and maladaptation

Oren Heller, Mika Moran, Shani Pitcho, Talia Meital Schwartz-Tayri, Jason Jabbari, Yaniv Shlomo, Michal Grintein-Weiss

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Self-isolation and quarantine are common and effective measures to contain the spread of COVID-19. However, it may have detrimental implications on young children's adaptation and mental health. The present study explores the prevalence of home quarantines among young children in Israel and their associations with children's maladaptive behaviors. The analysis is based on self-reported data obtained by 374 parents of young children in November 2021. Participants completed questionnaires, assessing the prevalence of home quarantines among children (aged 3-11 years old), and maladaptive behaviors, including rage outbursts, physical violence against family or friends, and panic attacks. Multivariate regression models were used to determine the relationships between the number of child quarantines and their maladaptive behaviors. Our results suggest that 51% of parents reported having their child quarantined more than once, which did not differ across socioeconomic characteristics. Furthermore, 66% of parents reported that during the pandemic, their child exhibited maladaptive behaviors at least once. Children who were quarantined more than once were more likely to exhibit rage outbursts, physical violence, and/or panic attacks. The associations between children's quarantine and physical violence were slightly stronger among families living in high-density households. Repeated experiences of home quarantine may operate as exposure to accumulative risk and have a lasting effect on young children's development. Practice and policy recommendations for interventions for young children and their families who experience home quarantines are discussed. (PsycInfo Database Record (c) 2023 APA, all rights reserved).

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)504-515
Number of pages12
JournalAmerican Journal of Orthopsychiatry
Issue number6
StatePublished - 2023
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Psychiatry and Mental health
  • Developmental and Educational Psychology
  • Arts and Humanities (miscellaneous)
  • Psychology (miscellaneous)


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