How to Deal With a Child’s Fears and Help Calm Their Anxiety?
Very often, children wake up in the middle of the night and ask you to stay with them because spiders, boogiemen, ghosts, and other “horrors” are there in their room. But what causes these child’s fears and how do kids get scared of the dark.
Where do children get these fantasies?
Certainly, adults who might be their parents, babysitters, or siblings create most of these fears. They will tell children the stories of the boogieman who kidnaps naughty children. The people who tell children of these imaginary characters mean no harm. However, lack of intention does not mean that it is okay to do this.
Some adults find it amusing because they are older and smart enough to know that the boogieman is fictional. Children believe everything parents tell them. For a child, its parents are a “reliable source” of information about this unknown world and this information may hamper brain development in children.
Psychologists have discovered a connection between adult insecurities and “childish” spooky stories.
For helping kids deal with anxiety, it is best if you simply explain to a child why something is not allowed,
For instance, “Don’t do this because you might get hurt!” rather than create horror stories. Since children are gathering information to learn about their world, they have an innate curiosity to also learn from experience.
Often, children like the feeling of being scared. It is a new and exhilarating emotion for them. However, it can be more than a young one is ready to cope with or experience, which thereby leads to nightmares or withdrawal.
Also, remember that fears can be brought about by negative information a child can overhear during the day.
Sometimes when a child’s attention is immersed elsewhere like a game or a book, parents think a little one is not paying attention. The parents think their children are not aware of what is happening in the background. If an adult is watching a movie thriller, or just has the news playing while they cook, their child is listening and will remember things they’ve overheard or viewed in snippets.
However, even though a child does not pay attention, it is still perceptive of noises in the background. So unless you want to spend all night persuading a kid that there is no ghost in its room, be careful with the information a kid gets during the day.
Parents’ fears are also a source of a child’s ones.
Undoubtedly, a parent’s fears can also become their child’s fears. For instance, if a parent hates dark places, a kid’s scared of the dark too. However, some of those fears can prevent a child from its normal way of development. If, for example, a parent is afraid of heights, it does not necessarily mean that a kid cannot go anywhere near slides.
Thus, parents must deal with their fears and try to eliminate such words as “scary” and “dangerous” when discussing them. The fears you can pass to your children can do more damage to a child than scary stories and talk about the boogieman.
Fighting a fear of darkness
The simplest way of helping your child overcome its fear of the dark is with a calm conversation. It helps kids with anxiety and they understand that they can come to talk about it.
Buying a furry friend. If a child has a fear when sleeping in his own room, a little one might find comfort in a puppy or a kitten. A furry friend can make the fear go away by simply cuddling up to a kid.
Change of interior. An interior renovation can help a kid to take his mind off scary fantasies. You can move some furniture around, buy new nightlights or bedsheets – all of this can help a child to deal with its fears.
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