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by Abigail Van Buren

Tween Starts to Fear the Worst About Frightening Diseases

DEAR ABBY: I am a tween and I'm scared about getting a disease or sickness. It started when I watched the news one night last month waiting for a show to come on. The news had all these terrible crimes and diseases, and that's when I started freaking out. My friend says I'm crazy, and I'm afraid she's right. All this worrying has me really feeling out of it. What should I do to quit worrying about diseases? -- SOUTHERN GIRL

DEAR SOUTHERN GIRL: There's a saying in the news business, "If it bleeds, it leads." It means the more shocking a story is, the more attention it will grab and the more people will watch. Quieting your fears may be as simple as talking with your parents about what's scaring you, or having them schedule a visit with your pediatrician.

Read more in: Health & Safety