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Tips on how to ease anxiety in kids during hurricane season

Leah A. Douglas, MD

NEW ORLEANS -- For many parents and guardians, talking about hurricane season can be challenging, especially while there's a national health pandemic. 

Children's Hospital New Orleans pediatrician, Dr. Leah Douglas, has tips on how your family can prepare for the hurricane season and how to help ease anxiety in children.

How to create a plan with your child

"When kids are involved in the process, this gives them a sense of control and helps to ease some of their stress and anxiety," says Dr. Douglas. 

Let your child help you create a hurricane supplies list! 

How to let your child help in preparing your family's emergency kit

"They can help pack the water bottles for the hurricane kit or help fill it with their favorite snacks," says Dr. Douglas.

  • Make it fun! Create a scavenger hunt or write out a storm preparation checklist.
  • With younger kids, draw pictures of heavy rain or downed trees to help them understand what might happen in a storm.
  • With older kids, be direct. Ask them if they're experiencing fear and anxiety. Reassure them that it's normal to feel worried.
  • Be calm, open, and honest with your children. 

For more tips on hurricane preparedness, visit ready.nola.gov.

                                                                                                                                                                

Leah A. Douglas, MD

Primary Care

Dr. Leah A. Douglas joined the Children’s Hospital Pediatric Primary Care team in July of 2019. Dr. Douglas earned her medical degree from the University of South Alabama College of Medicine in Mobile, Alabama. She went on to complete her internship and residency in Pediatrics at LSU Health New Orleans and Children’s Hospital New Orleans. Dr. Douglas has over 7 years’ experience in pediatric emergency medicine and pediatrics. She has lived in New Orleans for the past ten years, and has practiced primary care for the past five years. Dr. Douglas is board certified by the American Academy of Pediatrics and is a member of the American Medical Association. Her clinical interests include preventative medicine and promoting vaccine safety and efficacy. In her spare time, Dr. Douglas enjoys international travel, reading, animal rescue, and New Orleans Saints football.