Knowing what to do when children are afraid is just as important as what not to do. Scared to go outside, fear of sleeping alone, fear of the dark, of strangers ... there are many situations that cause fear in children. For children to overcome their fears, the attitude of parents is essential. It is up to parents to respect, understand and seek to understand their children's fears, and at the same time teach them to overcome them.
The childish fears They are unavoidable but if the child has the support and patience of his parents, fear will only be a 5-letter word. It is necessary for the child to feel confident in someone who can be controlled if the child has the trust and help of their parents and caregivers.
Follow these 9 tips and recommendations for children to overcome fears with the help and guidance of parents:
1 - Do not scare your child with stories of ogres, ghosts, witches, etc., especially before putting him to bed. You have to tell him that these characters only exist in stories and movies ...
2 - Do not laugh at the fears that your child expresses. If you ridicule or tease her fear, her confidence will decrease. Phrases like Don't be silly, kids like you shouldn't be afraid of that, or You are not ashamed to have these fears ...They will not contribute to diminish the fear that he feels. On the contrary, it will discourage him from sharing his fears with you.
3 - Do not transmit more fear to your child than he already has. He needs to have your security and trust. Don't ignore your fears. Do not lie to him, for example, saying that an injection will not hurt or something similar. If you lie about a scary situation it will make you more scared. Help him prepare to face the situation truthfully and honestly. If your child is afraid to go to school, listen to his reasons, take him to visit the school, show him his class and talk about how much he will learn there.
4 - Do not force your child to go through situations that he fears. Fears are not overcome by facing the situation once and for all. Rather than helping, sometimes this intensifies the fear. Your child has the right to gradually get used to the situation that he fears. Don't force him to watch a movie he's afraid of, or to pet a dog he doesn't like, or to ride a roller coaster when they go to an amusement park.
5 - Do not convey your personal fears to your child. If you are afraid of spiders, your child can feel it. The way you face your own fears gives your child the pattern to follow in dealing with similar situations. Fear is also learned.
6 - Do not call your child a coward or child if he is fearful in any situation. Don't ridicule him. That will not help you at all. It will make you feel insecure, needy, lonely, and without understanding.
7 - Do not force him to face his fear alone. This is a huge mistake. Never force your child into his room in the dark if he doesn't want to. You will cause an increase in their anxiety and you will help to lengthen that fear and even to perpetuate it. Also, the feeling of not being able to cope will not make you feel proud of yourself.
8 - Do not give too much importance. If every time you see a dog you stand between your child and the animal and insist that you defend him, the child will end up thinking that all dogs are really dangerous and will not be able to overcome his fear.
9 - Don't ignore your child's fears. If you do so, the child will feel lost and alone. He will not find a way to deal with the problem and he will perceive on your part disinterest and lack of affection and attention.
When the child is afraid of something, someone or some situation or circumstance, parents can follow these 5 tips:
1. Understand and put yourself in the child's shoes. Explain that fear is normal in certain situations. Talk to the child about why he is afraid and give him reasons to understand that his fears are unfounded.
2. Offer support and understanding. Show your child that you can help him lose his fear of something specific.
3. Help the child to rationally analyze that he is out of danger.
4. Teach the child to calm down using breathing technique.
5. Face your child's fears with him. If the child is afraid of dogs, for example, do not change the sidewalk when you meet a dog. Act naturally that little by little your child will realize that his fear does not make sense.
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