Q:

How can you help children cope with fire truck siren sounds?

A:

Quick Answer

When helping a child deal with a fear such as fear of fire truck siren sounds, it is important to identify the cause of the fear and acknowledge that it is real for the child. Maintain a calm demeanor, and comfort the child with warmth and compassion.

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Full Answer

Encourage the child to take slow, deep breaths. This helps reduce the body's physical reaction to stress. Offer physical support by giving the child a hug or letting him sit on your lap. When the child is in a more relaxed state, try to explain the noise to him so that he has a better understanding of the situation.

While a child should never be forced to confront his fear head-on, you can make the object of the child's fear less scary by playing with a toy fire truck together or asking him if he can make a fire truck noise with his voice. Framing the loud sound of a siren in a fun, positive context may help desensitize the child to his fear.

If you suspect that there is a deeper cause for the child's reaction to the loud sound of a fire truck siren, do your best to address the underlying cause, and seek professional counseling if necessary.

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