Is the news hurting your child?
Our Mental Health Matters Blog generally presents and discusses some new research findings in the field of children’s mental health and emotional development. This posting will be different, because we would like to provide some practical advice to parents at this time that there are so many concerning events throughout the Middle East and in Japan.
Although there are important issues to consider for children of all ages, preschool children are most vulnerable to being upset by disturbing current events. We often suggest that parents listen to the words that are coming across the radio or television news. Words and phrases such as danger, fire, shooting, guns, tanks, blood, and other words that a child can easily recognize and associate with danger
fill the airwaves. The most effective strategy for helping a young child with disturbing news is to prevent him or her from being exposed to the news in the first place! This may mean that parents have to make more effort to follow the news at times when their children are not present, but the extra work will be well worth it.
We will be writing more in the days ahead about aspects of this topic.
Mental Health Matters! is posted on the Carolina Parent Magazine's website, the Triangle's family resource - in print for over 21 years! And online at www.carolinaparent.com.