Six ways to help your kids deal with trauma

With so many horrible things happening in the world, from earthquakes to suicide bombers, kids need as much reassurance as possible.

A recent BBC survey showed that children are still affected by September 11 and are often scared that their parents won’t return home from work. Anne O’Connor, family psychologist and founder of has the following tips:

1. If your child has seen a car crash or some other nasty event (even if it was just on TV) don’t underestimate the impact simply because they weren’t directly involved.

2. Reassure your child that although something horrible might have happened to someone else it’s unlikely to happen to them.

3. Avoid information overload. Answer your child’s questions but don’t give them so much detail that it scares them even more.

4. Explain to your child how you and others have overcome traumas in your life. It will make them feel stronger and more positive.

5. Channel their feelings by encouraging them to do something practical for the victims of the trauma that’s upset them, such as organising a donation for a charity.

6. If you’re all going through a personal or domestic trauma, try to keep the routine as normal as possible. Also ask your GP for advice.