Undoubtedly, kids will have many questions when emergencies occur. Here are some things to keep in mind as children react to emergency events.
There are normal reactions you can expect children to have when they are confronted with disasters or emergencies. Those normal reactions include:
Increased fears not necessarily related to the disaster
Problems with going to sleep
Reluctance in being separated from parents
Stomachaches or headaches
As you talk to children about disasters, take these things into consideration:
Allow children to talk about the feelings they have and the feelings other people have had about the event.
Kids need to be reassured about their immediate safety.
Ask kids what they think about the event. Engaging them in conversation will be comforting. If you can't answer a question, it is okay to say you don't know.
Limit kids' exposure to television and radio coverage of the news. Graphic images can be very upsetting and scary.
Provide a simple explanation of the event. It may be helpful to ask what they have heard and seen on television.
Reassure kids about your own safety while at work.