Hurricanes can be scary — for grown-ups and kids alike. Kids learn how to
respond to situations based on the behaviors and attitudes of those around them.
Here are some tips to help them — and you — be ready during hurricane
Talk About Hurricanes
Kids might be confused about what a hurricane is, so use simple age-appropriate
descriptions of what to expect if one is coming your way. For a younger child, you
might say, "A hurricane is a tropical storm with very strong winds and lots of rain,
lightning, and thunder."
It's also important to tell kids that grown-ups will do their best to keep them
Try to Remain Calm Yourself
Kids can easily sense the emotions of those around them. When a parent seems overly
upset or worried, this can make a child's own fears or worries worse.
Let Kids Help With Pre-storm Preparations
Keeping them busy can help keep kids' minds off of their worries. Helping prepare
in age-appropriate ways also can increase a child's sense of control over the situation.
To involve your kids:
Prepare a family disaster emergency kit. Kids can help collect canned goods and
get flashlights ready.
Have your kids help bring outdoor items inside.
Discuss your family's disaster plan together. Will you need to evacuate —
and what would that look like? Which grown-ups will do what? This will help kids know
what to expect.
During the Storm
Let kids pick a few comfort items, nonelectronic games, and toys in case of power
Try to keep as normal a routine as possible. This can help children feel calm
Encourage kids to talk about their feelings or thoughts about what's happening.
Some kids might prefer not to talk right away — and that's OK too. Spend time
together and let them know that you're there when they're ready.
After the Storm
Monitor media exposure.
There can be "too much coverage" leading up to and especially after a hurricane hits.
These images might be too much for young eyes and sensitive hearts.
Let children help with clean-up.
Pay attention to signs of stress,
regressive behavior/acting younger than their age, and extra clinginess. These are
common in children who've gone through a traumatic
event. If you see any of these signs, talk to your doctor and know that trained