Helping the child to cope with phobias


It is a common sight witnessed in birthday parties to see kids cry incessantly watching  the huge muppet or older kids in masks. No amount of convincing from everybody brings the child to normalcy. Some kids are scared of people with spectacles. Others do not like insects. Many kids have a phobia while entering the pediatricians clinic. While for adults the advice is patience, there is more to do in conditioning the child before the actual confrontation.


Exposing the child early to a pool or a public place is the best thing. They get used to the noise, crowd and euphoria which is rare in nuclear families. Allow the child to leisurely play in the bath tub or create a mini swimming pool. At all times be with the child and supervise to prevent accidents. When the child visits the sea or a pool he/she is no more scared of the water or waves and the surprise is that he takes it to water like a fish.


There are kids who do not like spicy food and associate the colour red which is more of a colouring agent. Such colours are common in restaurants and parties. Cook a snack with this colour, introduce all the red coloured items like tomato, cherries, chilies and also the red balloon. Make them like the colour. Re-try with loads of patience.


Phobias later form into personality problems. The worst phobia is fear of darkness and a child normally resorts to bedwetting while visualizing a nightmare. A prank by peers also confuses the child. Assure the child that nothing will harm him. If the child wakes up crying for no reason or constantly mutters in his dream, create a story and tell him that he or she is a hero and his friends are God’s who will protect them at all times.


If you are taking the child first time to a party, expect a lot of mixed feelings. Pre condition the child, show him photographs of relatives. Kids love kids and babies. Repeat the names of her cousins and aunts and uncles. When you see them at the party, hug them and show how you are comfortable with them. Keep the child independent in a stroller or high chair so as to avoid clinging. Feed times should be maintained to further erase any grievances. List of phobias


Play music in the house, show them to dance, take them to malls and gardens. A one year old loves to imagine and show him the see-saw and let him watch the kids slide or jump on trampoline. When he gets to be a toddler he will not show any fear in trying these stunts. Children teach us a lot and be willing to learn.

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