Children's fears are different depending on the age of the children. Some remain over the years and others, however, appear and disappear as the child progresses. For example, the fear that a baby feels, more related to new discoveries and what is still unknown, is not the same as that of a 12-year-old child, which have much more to do with their social environment and responsibility .
Find out what children are afraid of according to their age. This graphic table will help you follow the evolution of children's fears by age.
Fears change with us throughout our different evolutionary stages. In children, they are very present from birth, but they are different as they grow. We explain what children are afraid of according to their age:
- From 0 to 6 months: During this stage of attachment, babies feel a very strong bond with their parents. They feel protected and everything around them is strange to them and poses a threat to them. For this reason, in the first 6 months, the most common fears are fears of strangers, but also of loud sounds that may startle them. They may also be afraid of falling as they are still fragile and need to feel safe both emotionally and physically.
- From 7 to 12 months: Babies begin to crawl, to stand up, to investigate the world around them. It is a time of exciting discoveries for them, and yet new fears are generated. For example, they still need the protection of their parents. They need to feel safe around them, and they start to fear that they will disappear. It is the stage in which they 'miss' the most. They do not understand why their parents disappear and reappear hours later. They think with horror that they are abandoned. Loud noises also continue to frighten them, and they begin to feel other types of fear of external stimuli. For example, to the bathroom. In many children of this age the first fears of heights also begin to appear.
- From 1 to 4 years: The bond with the parents remains very strong. They have not yet fully developed the necessary autonomy, and that is why they continue to fear abandonment. Many other very common fears are also generated in children, such as that of the dark, a fear that can accompany them for many years, and even last until adolescence.
At this stage, there are very different fears that depend on each child: loud noises, clowns, TV or fictional characters with strong colors that scare them ... Big and strong animals and storms, by the noise that thunder generates. Also, for the first time children are beginning to fear changes.
- From 4 to 8 years old: At this stage, the child is more independent and begins to give more importance to his social relationships. Suddenly he hears news and sees images on television that he does not understand and they shock and scare him. The first fears of wars, attacks, death and pain occur. He is also afraid of being left alone. And above all, the most common fear at this stage is monsters and supernatural beings, such as zombies, vampires or ghosts.
- From 8 to 12 years: The child finally understands that his parents are not going to abandon him. That fear disappears. He also abandons previous fears such as the fear of loud noises or monsters, since he finally understands that they do not exist. However, other deeper fears begin to be generated, related to their social environment and the responsibilities they are assuming. Suddenly they are afraid of being rejected, of their physical appearance, of failure, of disappointing their parents, of failing an exam ...
As you can see, fears evolve with children. Many of them, if not located and treated in time, can persist into adulthood.
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