2. Listen to your children carefully. Before responding, get a clear
picture of what it is that they understand and what is leading to
their questions. Emotional stress results in part when a child cannot
give meaning to dangerous experiences. Find out what he or she
understands about what has happened. Their knowledge will be
determined by their age and their previous exposure to such events.
Begin a dialog to help them gain a basic understanding that is
appropriate for their age and responds to their underlying concerns.
3. Give children reassurance and psychological first-aid. Assure them
about all that is being done to protect children who have been
directly affected by this crisis. Take this opportunity to let them
know that if any emergency or crisis should occur, your primary
concern will be their safety. Make sure they know they are being
4. Be alert for significant changes. Parents should be alert to any
significant changes in sleeping patterns, eating habits,
concentration, wide emotional swings or frequent physical complaints
without apparent illness. If present, these will likely subside within
a short time. If prolonged, however, we encourage you to seek
professional support and counseling. For children directly affected by
this crisis -- such as children who have lost a loved one -- parents
should consult their pediatrician or family doctor and consider
counseling, not just for the child, but also for the entire family. It
may be an important preventative measure. But other children also may
be affected by the images they see and stories they hear.
5. Expect the unexpected. Not every child will experience these events in
the same way. As children develop, their intellectual, physical and<
|SOURCE Save the Children|
Copyright©2007 PR Newswire.
All rights reserved