When to talk to children about personal safety

When to talk to children about personal safety

Playgrounds, schools, and swimming pools: all these things have something in common.

They are places where our children go to play.

While the kids are having fun, parents need to make sure their children are safe, even before heading out.

Parents may question when the right time is to have important conversations with their kids about their personal safety.

"We really encourage parents to have discussions with their kids about body parts, about what parts of their body are private, and really encourage them to have those discussions early," says Amy Scarmon, manager of the Mercy Child Advocacy Center.

For example, Scarmon recommends teaching children about all the body parts at the same time as learning the eyes, ears, mouth, and nose.

"If you have a child who maybe was sexually abused, but you've never taught them the word for their private part, they don't have the verbal skills or the abilities to go and talk to an adult about what happened to them in ways adults will understand," says Scarmon.

It is also suggested parents discuss boundaries with their children, giving them greater knowledge should a situation arise.

"It gives them tools that if they needed to share information about something that is happening to them later, then they have those skills to be able to do so." says Scarmon.

Scarmon adds that if you feel anything has happened to your children, call law enforcement or D-H-S to file a report.

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