How long should kids believe in the Easter bunny?

Believing in the Easter bunny can boost your child's creativity. See more holiday pictures.

Although the story is really similar to that of Santa Claus -- another friendly figure bringing kids goodies the night before a holiday -- most children probably don't ever truly believe in the Easter bunny in the same way they believe in St. Nick. Santa, after all, is a regular person, despite his sleigh and flying reindeer. So, if your child saw Santa at the front door, he'd probably just be excited. But if he saw a giant bunny outside hiding colored eggs, he'd likely be shocked -- even if he'd been chattering excitedly about the Easter bunny all spring.

Regardless, many kids do put a lot stock in the Easter bunny myth, and look forward to the arrival of their cotton-tailed friend all year. As a parent, you might worry that encouraging this belief is harmful, but that's not really true. It actually takes a lot of imagination for a child to believe in something like the Easter bunny, and to construct the fantasy world surrounding him: dying eggs every year, hiding them before Easter, carefully preparing and delivering goody-laden baskets and so on. Engaging in this type of behavior can help boost your child's creativity and develop his sense of wonder. And experts say there is simply no scientific evidence that belief in the Easter bunny has any long-term harmful effects.

Engaging in the Easter bunny fantasy is totally appropriate during your child's early years. And besides that, it's just plain fun. There's really no age limit on believing, but if you do think it's time for your little one to know the truth -- or are wondering if he already knows -- we have some tips. Read on to find out more.