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How can we help a child overcome fears?

Overcome fear child
Many children have fears, it’s normal, in fact there are common childhood fears that tend to coincide with different stages of development. Here are the most common childhood fears.

 

0-2 years: Sudden loss of the base of support (inattention), loud noises, separation from parents, animals, strangers, wounds, and darkness.

3-5 years: separation from parents, animals, darkness, physical harm and people in disguise.

6-8 years: separation from parents, animals, darkness, physical damage, imaginary beings (witches, ghosts, monsters…), storms, loneliness, death and school.

9-12 years: animals, physical damage, school (exams, failure), physical appearance, social relations and death.

13-18 years: school, physical appearance, social relations and death.

In most cases, the fears go away with time, but if the fears are excessive or not properly managed, it can cause them to increase and disable the child in some area of his or her life. In these cases, it is necessary to consult with a professional to teach the child how to deal with them and the parents how to handle the situation.

9 Steps to Help Them Get Over Their Ways
Pass on to the child that being afraid is normal
Don’t deny the fear, it is important that the child sees it as something natural that happens to everyone. Putting words into fear will help you understand: the neighbor’s dog scares you, doesn’t it? Many children are afraid of dogs, if you want today we can see him from here and we’ll get closer to the other day.

We have to explain to him that what scares him a lot now, as he gets older it will get easier, we can give him examples of ourselves when we were kids and give him examples of how we solved it at the time.

Create phrases that can be said at certain times
“I am brave’,’nothing is going to happen to me’,’I am strong’ are messages that the child can repeat when facing situations and that counteract the messages that fear gives them as’I am going to have a hard time’,’I am going to be hurt’. Negative phrases only increase fear, while positive phrases give them the strength to deal with them and give them a more appropriate self-image.

Relying on other emotions such as humor, laughter, joy, and even anger
It is no use convincing them that they are not afraid because it is irrational, it is more effective to give them other tools. Making up jokes about the dark, drawing pictures of clumsy thieves with clown noses, or getting angry at a dark room and making fun of it can make children see these situations with different eyes.

Don’t ridicule him
Calling him a coward, joking or punishing him won’t make him face his fears properly. When the child is feeling afraid, the last thing he needs is to be made to see that he is not brave enough or that he is doing something wrong. It will be of more help if we support him and make him see that he can face fear and that we will be there to accompany him.

child cries brother comforts brother

Focus on something else
When the complicated situation approaches, going to school, bedtime or leaving him at home with the babysitter, it will help him to talk about positive things and have fun, we can play a game or sing a song. This will help you avoid becoming overwhelmed by anticipating situations that scare you.

Using Security Objects
We can help you calm down by talking to you calmly and giving you familiar objects like the teddy bear.

How parents feel about their children’s fears
Sometimes, as parents, it affects us to see how afraid they are because we see them suffer or because it reminds us of old fears we had. If so, then it is likely that we will make a big deal out of it or try to avoid it in any way. This will make the child experience it more intensely and increase their fear.

How we act when we ourselves are afraid
If we overreact to our fears or avoid situations, the child will learn that these situations are dangerous and that the way out of them is to avoid them and not to confront them. If you analyze your fears, you will probably find some reflected in your child (fear of spiders, elevators…)

Use of fear in the educational style
Sometimes it is common to hear “If you don’t eat your food, you go into the darkroom”, “if you don’t fall asleep, the bogeyman will come”. These actions may have very short-term effects, but in the long term they will have negative consequences, you will learn to obey out of fear and not because you have learned the rules and understand why they apply.

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