Fear in 2-year-olds

Fear is a normal and necessary feeling that occurs in children. It is a natural condition that helps them to cope with the new experiences that are many and to protect themselves from danger.

Fears appear very early and most of these will gradually disappear as the little one feels more sure of himself and his environment.

- They don't like the dark: Also called nyctophobia, it is characterized by an irrational fear of the night or the dark. This childhood fear is completely adaptive within the child's development therefore it is totally expected and normal at this stage.

Any simple stimulus can cause the child to experience fear of the dark. From a story, an image from a movie can generate fear and uncertainty. In addition, they associate darkness with loneliness and abandonment. To all these reasons can be added the visual distortions that occur in dark environments. Children, not being able to do well in the dark, give dangerous meanings to shadows that they cannot see clearly.

- Anguish with wounds: It is a very common fear in children between the ages of 2 and 5. At this age children want to know the why of everything and are easily distressed. This anguish is not only with one's own injuries but also with what happens to others. If they see an injured person, the first thing they do is ask what happened to them, then they put themselves in their shoes and they will most likely ask if the same thing can happen to them.

- You still do not want to separate from your parents: The fear of separation is one of the most characteristic fears of children with one year. It lasts in time manifesting itself in different ways. One of them is the difficulty in saying goodbye to us when we have to be absent. Something very common that occurs, for example, at the time of leaving the child in the nursery.

- They get scared with strangers: It is another of the ways that the fear of separation takes. This type of fear already occurs from six months of age but lasts over time. Of course, it loses intensity to make room for other types of fears. Faced with this fear, children react naturally by clinging to their attachment figure to unknown people or those who have treated very little. It is something normal and without extraordinary character. Glasses, beards, loud voices, ... They can intimidate the little one. They cause you bewilderment.

- Fear of some animals: Fear of animals is usually present from the age of two to five. Any animal can be the object of fear, with dogs and cats being the most common, and therefore the most feared. The child not only fears the animal but will also fear what they can do. They can scratch, bite, etc.

The child will only fear some animals and with others he will be “brave”. The fear of animals also includes the fear of insects. It is very likely that this fear reaches adulthood, therefore, it is essential that the child learn to distinguish harmless insects from those that are not.

As long as the magnitude of the fears is within what is expected for the child's age, and their intensity does not limit or affect their quality of life, we are in the presence of fears that will disappear with development and will not have the character of phobias.

The normal thing is that the fear gradually subsides, however if it persists and its intensity becomes so important that it affects the child's quality of life, it is advisable to carry out an orientation consultation with a specialized psychologist.

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