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5 Ways to ease the fear of darkness in children

The colour black has a varied emotion attached to it, which ranges right from making a fashion statement to gloomy state of mind. It also symbolizes darkness, night and fear of the unknown.

Medically, it is termed as Nyctophobia. Not just kids but even few adults fear the same. In the ancient time, people did fear the darkness since it made them vulnerable to predators and it still continues as darkness brings us to an unknown territory.

As parents, it's our responsibility to make our kids more aware of their fears and make them capable to conquer the same. Most of the kids fear the darkness at the age of 2 to 3 when they cannot distinguish between the fantasy and the reality. This is the age when they start their imaginations.

Before we look into "what can be done" for dealing with the fear of darkness, let's see what may be the probable reasons that kids develop this fear.
1. Fear of being attacked by ghosts.
2. Thinking about death.
3. Strange noises.

Physical symptoms of the dark can be as follow :

1. Difficult in breathing
2. Screaming
3. Chest pain
4. Crying
5. Bed Wetting
6. Sweating
7. Shaking or trembling

Let us make our kids capable of fighting their fears. Check out the below-mentioned points:

1. Television:
The idiot box has a huge impact on children. Children often watch TV with their grandparents, parents or siblings. Few sounds, aggressive scenes, horrifying stories which even scares an adult gives a stimulation to the child's brain. They watch things which are age inappropriate. Hence TV during night time is a strict NO.

2. No bedtime scary stories:
Do not put your little ones to sleep while listening to a scary story. This will make them sleep in anxiety and will start imagining the scary character to be around them while they sleep in the dark.

3. Make bedtime a fun activity:
Make them listen to stories which will inspire them and leave a positive impact on their mind. You can also put on some soothing music.

4. Make them the hero:
Do not say ' let me make the monsters run away which are under your bed or in the closet '. Instead, ask your kid to shout back at the monster asking him to go away. This will make them feel empowered.

5. Use dim lights to keep the room slightly illuminated:
You can always use dim light settings to make the room in cosy condition for sleeping yet have some visibility around for kids. Plenty of sleep with some light on will always help the mind and body.

6. Happy room:
Make your child's room more positive with happy pictures on the wall, vibrant colours and a place where your child would love to spend more time. Once they have ownership of the space, it is very easy for them to conquer their fear of darkness.

7. Association to darkness:
Try to associate positive points to darkness (like the starry night, the planets, the constellations of stars, etc.) and make it a time where a child can explore more about the sky than in the daytime. This positive association will create optimistic curiosity and a sense of scientific exploration. It is a good way to make them aware of other elements associated with darkness.

8. Do not get irritated:
Do not get irritated at your child for his fear. Tell him it's normal and you are here to help him. Make him feel safe with you.

I feel if we understand our children and respect their thoughts we will surely be able to make them capable of fighting all the fears in life.

Avatar About Author

Swati Sandhane.

An enthusiastic individual, focussed professional and someone who lives life with a strong positive outlook are just a few words to describe Swati Sandhane.

Having completed her Masters in Business Management, working as a HR professional with a IT firm and handling responsibilities in a happy marriage for 4 years Swati recently welcomed her first child 5 months back. As a new mother everything is the first time and Swati is now honing her mommy skills very well.

While she intends to get back to work she also wants to share her experience in baby care and all other factors which are related to baby and mother well being.

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