LANSING, Mich. (WLNS) -Tuesday was an emotional day for hundreds of families across Michigan after a major scare at Okemos High School, Jackson High School, and six other districts.

Dozens of police officers swarmed the buildings on reports of an active shooter at the schools.

Those reports turned out to be false, but the scare and stress from the day are still very real.

“There’s no other feeling than just fear. You’re filled with fear and try to be as safe as possible. And then you have in your mind, the people you love are in danger and, it’s just a million thoughts running per hour,” said Okemos High School Junior Zachary Barker.

Barker was locked inside a classroom while police moved through the school looking for what they were told could be an active shooter.

“I’m in a little bit of shock to be honest with you, I thought it was a lockdown drill,” said senior Ethan Hammond.

While the threat was fake, but psychological science professor Jessie Borelli says the lasting emotions can be very real.

“Everyone in this situation has strong reactions but it sends a very important message to talk to your children. It tells them it’s okay to talk about these things. That there’s a space to talk about these things and their parents are people they can talk to about these things,” she said.

Borelli suggests asking your child what they know about the traumatic event. She says to clear up any rumors in a calm reassuring way and let them know there are plans for these types of ordeals.

But the conversation doesn’t have to stop here. Borelli says checking back in weeks later can be as simple as talking in the car.

“It is also a good idea to be ready for when they bring it up and be ready to respond,” said Borelli.

Jody Nelson, a local youth services coordinator, says these talks can be hard, especially if your teen doesn’t feel like talking.

“Because we want to respect children’s autonomy but we also want to make sure they know we are here. So sometimes it’s just a matter of reassuring them,” said Nelson.

He says students can help other students process the trauma together. And even bring their concerns to a trusted adult at school.

“If they are worried about a friend and that friend doesn’t want to go talk to someone, they may need to talk to someone and let them know they are concerned about their friend.”

All these experts say parents should also take time for themselves and check on their own needs.

Nelson says getting back into your normal routines as soon as you can and basic things like enough sleep can help process things.