Traumatised by Smoke Alarm...any ideas?(6 Posts)
2 weeks ago my DS (2.7 years) experienced a fire alarm (false alarm) at nursery that he got quite worked up about. He was talking about being scared about cars etc as nursery had needed to take the children to the car park and evacuate the building (and we're always telling him to be careful in the cat park as cars are dangerous).
Unfortunately within 24 hours of this happening, we were awoken at 4am by our smoke alarm going off (false alarm).
Since then he has been understandably scared - refuses to walk up the stairs/on the landing near the smoke alarm, has to be carried and will bury his head right into your shoulder and close his eyes so he can't see it. He quite often tells us he is scares of it because it was loud.
We've talked about it (do you remember when Mr Smoke Alarm went off? It was very loud wasn't it? It scared DS and mummy and daddy but it was just being our friend and shouting "wake up!") and he will occasionally talk about it himself (smoke alarm loud) but 2 weeks on and we're still having issues. I appreciate and understand he's scared but thought it would have eased off by now.
Tonight he's insisted on being carried to bed, burying face in my shoulder as usual. He's laid in bed as close to me as possible and you can really see him screwing his eyes up as he doesn't want to open them. Thursday night he woke up in tears and ended up coming into bed with us. he was talking about " scary circle at nursery need batteries and fire engine came". He also woke up with a jump (waking both me and DH up) and shouted "it's too loud" so is obviously still reliving it and trying to process it.
Any ideas on what we can do to try an calm him down/reassure him/help him deal with it?
Oh dear, poor Ds . We had a similar thing with the Broadmoor siren (the prison-they have sirens that go off in the local area at 10am on a Monday morning-we didn't know and it scared us both to death) and even now 5 months later Ds asks every week when we go to that activity whether the 'big drill' will be on... However he has calmed down about it with lots of reassurance. Hand dryers in public toilets however-I have no idea how to cure him of that fear...!
My children are grown up but have ASD and sensory stuff upsets them, alarms vacuums drills hand dryers, I think for my three it's the shock of the surprise that upsets them, plus the fact they've no control over it, I found an app with lots of random noises noises you can press and that seemed to help that they could do the noise, even more exciting when they could match the noise.
Call your local fire station and ask when they next have an open day...they're marvelous and perhaps if DS experiences a fire engine and then relates the alarm to the cool guys in the uniforms, it may change his thoughts about it all.
We had the same situation with the fire alarm going off in the nursery and all children having to leave the building quickly. My son was most upset about not putting shoes and jackets on.
This happened about 4 months ago and he was quite scared/freaked out by the alarm and traumatized by it afterwards. We bought a book about a fireman and fire stations and fire engines and talked a lot about fire alarms and false alarms. Now (age 3.2) he still mentions it every now and then.
I used to turn hand dryers off at the plug on the wall so no one else would use them while I had DS1 in the toilets. I know, bad me! I'd second the idea of the fire brigade visit, I know they used to do random visits to nurseries a lot when my DCs were little.
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