Even though some phobias go away without requiring any treatment, others worsen with the time and require personal care and treatment. However, it becomes difficult for the parents to help especially when the child is reluctant to discuss the situation.
If parents see a change in the behavior of the child, they should talk to the child about his or her concern. They should try to become a friend of the child. Never should a parent criticize a child for not being frank. Children are very perceptive about moods. Therefore, if they sense the negativity surrounding them, they will easily clam up more. The tone of speaking should not sound accusatory. Instead, try talking them out of their fear/ phobias.
On one hand, parents should become supportive. Many parents force their child to confront the fear initially. Sometimes, parents make the mistake of driving the child through situations they are afraid of. Such things can only increase the pressure on the child, psychologically. Leave such treatments into the hands of the professionals. They are adept at trying various techniques. ‘Flooding’ is one of the techniques.
On the other hand, parents should not become overtly supportive. Some of the parents shield their child from any possibilities of confrontation of fear. This will lead to the reinforcement of the phobia making it difficult for the child to improve for better.
It is always difficult for the parents to decide whether they should give a treatment or not. If the child has a specific type of phobia, which does not hamper the child’s normal life, then parents tend to overlook the matter thinking it will cure itself with time and without treatment. This is a negative way of dealing things. It is true that some phobias take around 6 months before it becomes positively visible. The parents should maintain their calm and composure with occasionally talking to the child about their fears. Take the child to a therapist as soon as possible for treatment.