Navigation Links
Weather Worries Can Threaten a Child's Mental Health
Date:5/21/2013

TUESDAY, May 21 (HealthDay News) -- The monstrous tornado that devastated Moore, Okla., on Monday, killing dozens of adults and children, is a stunning example of violent weather that can affect a child's mental well-being.

But even thunderstorms with lightning and strong winds can be emotionally upsetting, too, health experts note.

Some anxiety in the face of violent weather is normal. But some children develop storm phobias that interfere with their everyday lives, said Stephen Whiteside, a psychologist and anxiety prevention expert at the Mayo Clinic Children's Center in Rochester, Minn.

Worries about weather can make it hard for kids to concentrate in school, Whiteside said. Some will routinely check weather forecasts or become afraid to leave the house.

It's essential that parents not tell their anxious children they are being silly or otherwise dismiss their fears, he said.

"The important thing for parents is to remember to be warm and supportive of your child," Whiteside said in a Mayo news release. "If you get anxious or frustrated or upset, that's just going to make things worse. Try to stay calm and help your child gradually face their fears in a step-by-step fashion."

Mental health experts typically advise parents to shield their children from media coverage of natural disasters and to be available to those who need reassurance or comfort.

When talking to children about their weather-related worries, Whiteside recommends the following:

  • Be calm and supportive. Tell children that things like thunder won't hurt them. Explain that storms are a normal part of nature.
  • Talk about storms matter-of-factly. Some kids may seem afraid of storms, but are really interested in learning more about them.
  • The same type of exposure-based behavioral therapy used to treat many worries and phobias works well with weather-related phobias. It boils down to helping children face their fears by gradually helping them learn they can handle a fear -- and other uncertainties of life -- on their own.
  • If the anxiety doesn't diminish, or begins to create greater stress for the child or the parent, get the assistance of a mental health professional.

About 8 percent of teens ages 13 to 18 have an anxiety disorder, with symptoms commonly emerging around age 6, according to the U.S. National Institute of Mental Health.

In Moore, search and rescue operations continued Tuesday with thunderstorms and heavy rainfall expected. Forecasters were predicting isolated tornadoes, golf-ball-sized hail and thunderstorms for other parts of Oklahoma, Texas, Arkansas and Louisiana.

More information

The U.S. National Library of Medicine has more about childhood stress.

-- Margaret Farley Steele

SOURCE: Mayo Clinic, news release, May 21, 2013


'/>"/>
Copyright©2012 ScoutNews,LLC.
All rights reserved  

Related medicine news :

1. Garden Revival: Gardening Expert Melinda Myers Shares Tips for Helping Gardens Recover From Extreme Weather Conditions
2. Warmer Weather is Finally Here, And So Are the Ticks - Is Your Family Protected?
3. As the Weather Warms, Keep Children Safe with Important Residential Pool Safety – Tip Sheet by AlarmSystemReport.com
4. Winter Weather Plays a Role in Spring Allergies, Expert Says
5. EMJ Cleaning Service Offers Discount Following Severe Weather
6. For Some, Views on Global Warming Change With the Weather
7. Keeping Cold-Weather Exercise Fresh, Not Frozen
8. Request A Test Receives Their Third Weatherhead 100 Upstart Award in December, 2012
9. Winter Weather, Snow Shoveling Pose Heart Risks
10. Flu outbreaks predicted with weather forecast techniques
11. Carbon Monoxide Poisoning Hazards Rise in Colder Weather
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
Related Image:
Weather Worries Can Threaten a Child's Mental Health
(Date:6/24/2016)... ... June 24, 2016 , ... ... skills and infrastructure. Most providers, however, are unsure how to move forward, given ... to define a path forward tailored to an organization’s specific needs. , ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... ... June 24, 2016 , ... Today, InhaleLabs.com (Inhale) offilially launched its ... by matching users with high quality water pipes within an ideal price range. The ... Inhale was founded by two brothers, Nick and Mike Hunter, who use medical cannabis ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... ... 24, 2016 , ... Dr. Seema Daulat, a native Texan and University of ... location as of July 13, 2016. , Dr. Daulat earned her Doctorate of Medicine ... regularly volunteered at the Agape Clinic serving Dallas’ underprivileged community. , Following medical school, ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... Los Angeles, CA (PRWEB) , ... June 23, 2016 , ... ... being conducted that may expose a possible link between head and neck cancer in ... individuals participating in the study were evaluated based on whether they had gum disease, ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... ... June 23, 2016 , ... The Mechille Wilson Agency, a Texas-based insurance ... and the surrounding region, is initiating a charity drive to assist a student to ... for a scholarship fund that will be presented to the chosen student to help ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:6/23/2016)... -- Roche (SIX: RO, ROG; OTCQX: RHHBY) announced that ... PCT (procalcitonin) assay as a dedicated testing solution for ... clearance, Roche is the first IVD company in the ... risk assessment and management. PCT is a ... in blood can aid clinicians in assessing the risk ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... June 23, 2016 Bracket , a leading ... next generation clinical outcomes platform, Bracket eCOA (SM) 6.0, ... June 26 – 30, 2016 in Philadelphia ... Clinical Outcome Assessment product of its kind to fully integrate ... Bracket eCOA 6.0 is a flexible platform for electronic ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... Revolutionary technology includes multi-speaker listening ... industry leaders in advanced audiology and hearing aid technology, ... ™, the world,s first internet connected hearing aid that ...      (Photo: http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20160622/382240 ) , ... ,world firsts,: , TwinLink™ - the first ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: