The world can be a scary place, especially for a young child with a healthy imagination. Help your child gain the confidence they need with this advice.
- TIP: Make a rhyme or song using the coping words to help your child remember them.
- Step 1: Tell your child to close their eyes and think about what scares them. Remind your child to breathe deeply and use their coping phrases.
- Step 2: Ask your child’s physician for advice. They will be able to offer guidance or refer you to a trained therapist if you are not able to cope with your child’s fears alone.
- FACT: Ninety percent of children between the ages of two and 14 are afraid of at least one specific thing.
- Step 3: Practice breathing exercises with your child to control the shallow, fast breathing that can occur during a fearful situation. Discuss using coping words and statements with your child when confronting their fears. Practice the phrases out loud with them.
- Step 4: Discuss the fear with your child. Ask your child questions and find out how the fear originated and determine what exactly they are afraid of. Ask them what they think might happen if they confront the fear.
- Step 5: Do not ignore your child’s fears.
- Step 6: Show support for your child and respect for their fears. Acknowledge their fear and let your child know that it is ok to feel afraid. Let them know that they should always tell you when they are afraid.
- TIP: Dismissing their feelings can make them feel alone and ashamed.
- Step 7: Stay calm. Do not panic or overreact when your child does.