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Can Munchausen syndrome be prevented?

Joni Johnston
Psychology

Until we better understand what causes Munchausen syndrome, we won't know how to prevent it. However, given that one risk factor is exposure to serious illness as a child, it is important for parents with a seriously ill child to promote self-sufficiency and independence as opposed to focusing on a child's limitations or overly emphasizing the role of caretaker.

Talk with your child's doctor about setting reasonable expectations for what your child can accomplish, both mentally and physically, and support your child in succeeding at these tasks independently. Taking this approach may help foster your child's long-term mental health.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.