Large parts of NSW are being affected by bushfires and the recovery effort may continue for some time. Children are more vulnerable to the effects of smoke because they spend more time outdoors engaged in physical activity, have developing airways and breathe more air relative to their body weight.
It is important to think about ways to reduce their exposure. Children with asthma may be more sensitive to smoke.
Face masks – P2/N95 rated face masks can filter out the fine particles in smoke. However,
they are not designed to fit children. For more information on P2 masks and children, read the
Frequently asked questions.
If your child has diagnosed asthma:
The Sydney Children’s Hospital Network provides a range of resources for parents on its
Aiming for Asthma Improvement in Children website including a
Good asthma control checklist.
Emergencies and disasters are extremely stressful and it is normal for children, even infants, to be affected. They depend on the adults around them for safety and security, and will need reassurance, care, and opportunities to share their feelings. This includes children in areas under immediate threat, through to children in areas in recovery after having experienced bushfires.
Emerging Minds leads the National Workforce Centre for Child Mental Health and is funded by the Australian Government Department of Health under the National Support for Child and Youth Mental Health Program. The Emerging Minds
Community Trauma Toolkit provides a starting point for you to help your children and teenagers navigate the different stages of a disaster.
The Kids Helpline is a free, private and confidential 24/7 phone and online counselling service for young people aged 5 to 25 years. Call
1800 551800 or visit