Coping with IBD
It’s never easy to learn that you have a chronic illness. Kids who are diagnosed with IBD might feel afraid, sad, nervous, or just “different.” These feelings are completely normal, and most children are able to cope well with their diagnosis.
However, watch for any these behaviors, which may indicate that your child is having trouble transitioning to life with IBD:
- Difficulty sleeping
- Poor eating habits
- Persistent sadness and/or frequent crying
- Lack of interest in usual activities and hobbies
Helping Your Child Cope
If your child seems to be having trouble dealing with his or her IBD, parents and trusted adults can be a great source of comfort and help. Keep the lines of communication open, and be sure to let the child know:
- It’s normal to feel sad or anxious about IBD
- With IBD treatment, most kids lead normal, active lives
- It’s important to talk about your feelings with a parent or a doctor
- Anything you share with a doctor is confidential and private—he or she can’t tell anyone else without your permission
- Kids are different for all kinds of reasons—you’re great the way you are!