Help your Child Heal After An Accident in 3 Simple Steps


There is only one thought worse than being involved in an accident and that is one of our children being involved in an accident. As all accidents, car, sporting, falls or a burn are unexpected, they always come as a shock. Dealing with that shock and knowing how to look after our children after an accident can sometimes be a challenge, particularly if we have never been in that kind of a situation before. So today we wanted to share our top tips for helping children to recover after a shocking accident.

The Psychological Effect
It is no wonder that accidents often have an emotional and psychological impact on children. Car accidents involving children are not just about whiplash personal injury claims they are about the psychological effect that being involved in a shocking incident can have on a child. A dog bite or an accidental burn can be equally shocking and can also require significant care and attention in order to allow the child to process what has happened and to feel normal and happy again.

It is not a one-size-fits-all approach as some children bounce back really quickly and cope really well whilst others take more time to adjust again. Every accident and every child is different but it is wise to familiarise yourself with the common responses.

Common responses
Again, all different children have different responses to being involved in an accident however some of the common responses that your child might have include feeling anxious, worried, withdrawn and sad. There can also be physical changes and these can range from being jumpy, having problems sleeping, fast heart beat, headaches and feeling nauseous. Your child may also have changed in the way that they think. They may have more difficulty concentrating and struggling with everyday life. They may also become more withdrawn and will not want to be around people or may even not want to be alone.

All of these symptoms can be hard for a parent, but it is important to know that they are normal and they are temporary so try to stay relaxed for yourself and for your child. Most children do move on from these symptoms reasonably quickly, some gradually adjust over a couple of months and some children experience distress that goes on for longer than others.

How Can You Help?
One of the most important things you can do to help as a parent is to try and get back to your normal routine as soon as possible. It sends the message to children that everything is absolutely fine and back to normal. It is also natural to feel extra protective of children after they’ve been involved in an accident, however try not to do this too much and encourage them to participate in all their usual activities and hobbies.

Talking about the accident is also a good idea but it is wise to think carefully about how best to approach it. So bear in mind that although it is usually better to talk about it than not to to talk about it, remember you are a role model and you must stay calm and soothing throughout the conversation. Answer your child's questions simply and honestly and show them that they are safe, loved and protected and that you are there whenever they need to talk about it, or just need you close.

These situations can be upsetting and frightening for everyone involved. So make sure that whilst you look after your child in their recovery, that you are also looking after yourself to get over the shock of such an upsetting situation. Be good to yourself and heal together as a family.

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