Nearly half of all parents in Yorkshire say their children are anxious about the threat of terrorism.
A new survey from researchers YouGov has revealed that 45% of parents in our region with children aged 5-18 say those children are anxious about possible terrorist attacks.
That’s slightly higher than the national average – across England, 41% of parents said their children were either fairly or very anxious about terrorism.
The survey was commissioned by the Mental Health Foundation to uncover the impact world events could be having on children, and equip parents to respond.
It also revealed that almost a quarter of parents in Yorkshire and the Humber (24%) indicated their children were anxious about the threat of nuclear war.
A further 28% of parents in the region thought their children were anxious about Donald Trump’s presidency, while 29% also thought their children were anxious about global warming and climate change.
Some of the signs of anxiety about these things that parents across the country have noticed include their children starting to ask a lot more questions and seeking reassurance.
Others noticed their children were asking to avoid activities such using public transport or going to busy public places, while some also reported their children having nightmares.
Overall, almost four in ten parents (39%) were concerned that their children are becoming more anxious about world and national events.
Child psychology expert Dr Camilla Rosan, of the Mental Health Foundation, said: “We often forget that distressing world events can have a significant impact on the mental health of our children. This is especially true in the digital age where it’s no longer possible to shield our children from worrying or scary news.
“Our poll indicates widespread anxiety among children– especially about the threat of terrorism. But the good news is there is a lot we can do to help children cope with scary events.
“It’s important for example to let children know the facts of any given event but also to put things into perspective and let them know they are safe. Anxiety about scary news events is normal, but not something children have to deal with alone.
“Parents can really help tackle problems early and support good mental health for their children by talking about these issues in an open and honest way.
“This lets them know that it’s okay to talk about scary or tricky subjects and, hopefully, will give them the confidence to talk about things that might be playing on their mind at other times too.”