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Dealing with Your Preschooler’s Separation Anxiety

September 19, 2018

Dealing with Your Preschooler’s Separation Anxiety

Attending preschool for the first time can be overwhelming for both you and your child. After all, this is the first time that you’ll be spending extensive time away from each other. This change can take some time to get used to, especially since preschool is a new environment. Don’t worry though! There are some helpful ways to ease into this transition. Here are some helpful things to remember during this prodigious time.

Get Your Preschooler Comfortable Being Apart from You            

It can be scary for toddlers to see their parents leave them somewhere new and unfamiliar for a few hours each day.  Without having spent anytime away from mom or dad before, they just don’t understand what’s going on. Try incorporating a little separation into your daily routine a bit at a time. This will get them used to the idea of being separated from you before their first day of preschool arrives. A fun play date with their grandparents, babysitter, or even their aunt and uncle is an easy distraction to step out for a bit without them!

Visit the Preschool Ahead of Time

If you suspect that your little one may find it difficult to adjust to a new environment, reach out the school and arrange a visit or two ahead of time. These visits can give your child an opportunity to get more familiar with the teachers and their new school. This way, when it’s time to drop them off, they’ll have a few familiar faces to help ease their worries.

Make Sure to Let Them Know When You Leave

Although you may think it’s a good idea to slip away once your child seems okay and distracted, leaving without saying goodbye can cause them more anxiety. When you see your toddler developing more confidence in their new environment, that’s your cue to say goodbye and let them know when you’ll be coming back.  Always leave them on a positive note!

Give it Some Time

It can take time for children to adjust to their new routine. They may seem fine one week and freak out the next. Occasional meltdowns and tantrums are to be expected as they get used to the overload of change. Give them some time and talk to the teachers to see what they recommend for making your little one feel more comfortable and relaxed at school.

Dealing with a few road bumps during this fairly major life stage is totally normal. The key is easing your toddler into their new environments by making them feel supported and comfortable. They’ll get used to it in no time, so try to embrace this new chapter in both of your lives!

 


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