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How To Teach Your Kids About MS

By Daryl H. Bryant (485 words)
Posted in Living with MS on February 23, 2018

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How To Teach Your Kids About MS

Kids are more intelligent than we usually give them credit for. If you or your child has MS, they probably already understand more than you would guess about the disease. Still, it’s important to teach them so that they don’t develop misunderstandings. Read on to learn how to teach your kids about MS.

Start With the Basics

Before getting into the nitty gritty, start things off with a basic overview of MS. If you feel confident explaining it yourself, sit down in a comfortable setting and start at the beginning. Explain what MS is and how it affects your life (and/or your child’s). If you don’t feel comfortable teaching this yourself, consider finding a Youtube video that will teach the basics for you like the video “What Is Multiple Sclerosis”. Youtube works well because the videos engage kids of all ages. If your kids are very young, you may have to simplify certain explanations, but don’t let that keep you from sharing the actual science. Kids are great at learning new things, especially when they are learning about things that impact their lives directly.

Have a Conversation

After you’ve gone over the basics, it’s time to open up a dialogue. You want your kids to feel comfortable coming to you with questions they have, even if they think the questions are silly. Ask if there are any things that didn’t make sense to them. If they say that they understand, ask them to explain what MS is in their own words to check for understanding. Ask questions that delve into feelings about MS, as well as understanding of the facts to set fears at ease. You’d be surprised how many MS myths kids can pick up from their peers and overheard information. Reassure your child and set any misunderstandings straight.

Encourage Your Child to Learn More

If you have Multiple Sclerosis, encourage your kids to ask questions about your disease and symptoms if they have any. Explain to them that they are welcome to ask any questions that come up later too. You may also encourage them to look up information online if you feel they are mature enough to filter through the results. If you do, though, remind them that the internet contains lots of misinformation, so if they learn anything confusing or upsetting, they should always feel free to run it by you and verify its truthfulness. Try to be honest with your kids about your health so that they aren’t caught off guard by dramatic changes. If your child has Multiple Sclerosis, it is even more important that you encourage him or her to learn more about the disease. Find a support group for your child and look for ways to connect with other kids who have Multiple Sclerosis.

Learn more about parenting a child who has Multiple Sclerosis or parenting when you have MS.


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