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What to say when children are worried

It can be really difficult for parents to know what to say when children are worried. We desperately want to make them feel better as quickly as possible – but supporting an anxious child takes time, patience and understanding. Here is a 3-minute video with are six tips that might help.

If you are not sure what to say when children are worried, remember:

  1. Reassure them it’s OK to feel worried
  2. Focus on how not why
  3. Explain the brain
  4. Use a worry box
  5. Teach self-soothe strategies
  6. Don’t encourage avoidance

If you are worried about your child’s anxiety, we provide specialised parenting support for parents of anxious children. This longer video on Teaching children self-soothe strategies might also be helpful. You can find other sources of support here:


Photo of worried child to illustrate video by parenting expert Anita Cleare on what to say when children are worried

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By Anita Cleare

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