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Psychological Trauma

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  • Pages: 6
  • Word count: 1348
  • Category: Child

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•Trauma is an individual’s response to an emotionally distressing and unexpected event which overwhelms their capacity to manage. It can be a single event or enduring activity, which completely overwhelms the individual’s ability to manage the emotions associated with the experience. Traumatic events shatter an individual’s assumptions of trust, and shake the basis of their beliefs about safety. •Research has clearly demonstrated the link between severe abuse and traumatic responses in children. What are the signs of trauma?

•Traumatic experiences often involve a threat to life or safety, but any situation that leaves you feeling overwhelmed and alone can be traumatic, even if it doesn’t involve physical harm. •It’s not the objective facts that determine whether an event is traumatic, but your subjective emotional experience of the event. The more frightened and helpless you feel, the more likely you are to be traumatized. • A stressful event is most likely to be traumatic if:

•It happened unexpectedly.
•You were unprepared for it.
•You felt powerless to prevent it.
•It happened repeatedly.
•Someone was intentionally cruel.
It happened in childhood.

Child abuse is defined as “any recent act or failure to act on the part of a parent or caretaker which results in death, serious physical or emotional harm, sexual abuse or exploitation, an act or failure to act which presents an imminent risk of serious harm”. The four main types of abuse are physical, sexual, psychological, and neglect. Neglect

Neglect is the instance in which the responsible adult fails to adequately provide for various needs, including physical (failure to provide adequate food clothing, or hygiene), emotional (failure to provide nurturing or affection) or educational (failure to enroll a child in school) Poverty

Poverty refers to the condition of not having the means to afford basic human needs such as clean water, nutrition, health care, clothing and shelter. According to the World Health Organization, hunger and malnutrition are the single gravest threats to the world’s public health and malnutrition is by far the biggest contributor to child mortality, present in half of all cases. PSYCHOSOCIAL DEPRIVATION

* The absence of appropriate stimuli in the physical or social environment which are necessary for the emotional, social, and intellectual development of the individual. * violence -The quality or state of being violent; highly excited action, whether physical or moral; vehemence; impetuosity; force. -The stress associated with violence exposed and the necessary coping with violence as an everyday event affect both the mothers ability to parent and child capacity to form healthy attachment relationship. IMPACT OF TRAUMA IN DEVELOPMENTAL PROCESS

•Millions of children are affected by physical and sexual abuse, natural and technological disasters, transportation accidents, invasive medical procedures, exposure to community violence, violence in the home, assault, and terrorism. Unfortunately, the emotional impact of exposure to trauma on children is often unappreciated and therefore untreated, and yet the impact of exposures to disaster and violence is profound and long-lasting.(Lubit R et al 2003,. impact trauma children) Neglect, physical abuse, and sexual abuse have profound immediate and long-term effects on a child’s development. The long-term effects of abuse and neglect of a child can be seen in higher rates of psychiatric disorders, increased rates of substance abuse, and a variety of severe relationship difficulties.( Child Abuse and Neglect: Effects on child development, brain development, and interpersonal relationships Arthur Becker-Weidman,2001.

• A 2006 study found that childhood emotional and sexual abuse were strongly related to adult depressive symptoms, while exposure to verbal abuse and witnessing of domestic violence had a moderately strong association and physical abuse a moderate one. •The effects of child sexual abuse include depression, post-traumatic stress disorder,[12] anxiety,[13] propensity to re-victimization in adulthood, and physical injury to the child, among other problems. Sexual abuse by a family member is a form of incest, and can result in more serious and long-term psychological trauma, especially in the case of parental incest. •Approximately 15% to 25% of women and 5% to 15% of men were sexually abused when they were children. Most sexual abuse offenders are acquainted with their victims; approximately 30% are relatives of the child, most often brothers, fathers, uncles or cousins; around 60% are other acquaintances such as friends of the family, babysitters, or neighbours; strangers are the offenders in approximately 10% of child sexual abuse cases.

Victimized people commonly develop emotional or psychological problems secondary to their abuse, including anxiety disorders and various forms of depression. They may develop substance abuse disorders. If abuse has been very severe, the victim may be traumatized, and may develop a posttraumatic stress injury such as posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD), or acute stress disorder. If abuse has occurred from a very early age and has been substantial, a personality disorder may occur (such as borderline, narcissistic, or histrionic personality disorders or in some cases, a severe dissociative disorder such as dissociative identity disorder (commonly known as multiple personality disorder). Sexual disorders may be present. Sex may be experienced as particularly undesirable, or physically (Kathryn Patricelli ) Traumatic events in childhood increase the risk of borderline personality disorder and other mental health problems. Emotional trauma at a time when the brain isn’t fully developed may cause changes to the brain and decrease a person’s ability to deal with stressful situations later in life. (Daniel K. Hall-Flavin)

Parents who are exposed to chronic violence may also become depressed and unable to provide for their young children’s needs. If parents are be more sad and anxious , it will be more difficult for them to respond positively to the smiles and lively facial expressions to their young children. Biological

A trauma-induced prolonged stress response will result in an abnormal pattern, timing and intensity of catecholamine activity in the developing brain. The time during development that this prolonged or abnormal catecholamine activity is present determines, to some degree, the nature and severity of the disrupted development. In general, the earlier and the more pervasive the trauma, the more neurodevelopment will be disrupted. The intrauterine environment is not necessarily protective. There is some evidence to suggest that prenatal or maternal traumatic stress has significant impact on neurodevelopment — battering the pregnant mother is also battering the developing fetus (Amaro et al., 1980). The majority of child abuse or neglect takes place after birth, however.

The development of the human brain continues beyond birth and its development remains vulnerable to the abnormal patterns of neurotransmitter and hormone activity associated with traumatic stress. Young children victimized by trauma are at risk for developing permanent vulnerabilities — changes in neuronal differentiation and organization — changes in brain development which persist into adolescence and adulthood, with potential impact on all aspects of emotional, cognitive and behavioral functioning. Childhood abuse and other extreme stressors can have lasting effects on brain areas involved in memory and emotion. The hippocampus is a brain area involved in learning and memory that is particularly sensitive to stress (Bremner, J. D. (1999). The Lasting Effects of Psychological Trauma on Memory and the Hippocampus. )

Early-life trauma affects future self-esteem, social awareness, ability to learn and physical health. When the attachment bond goes well, neurological integration develops normally, and relationship brings the expectation of safety, appreciation, joy and pleasure. If the attachment bond was unsuccessful and traumatizing, neural deregulation and memories of a failed relationship become the basis for adult expectations of intimacy. Fortunately, relationships with secure adult partners can bring about emotional healing in insecure partners. (Trauma, Attachment, and Stress Disorders: Rethinking and Reworking Developmental Issues Attachment, The emotional bond formed between an infant and its primary caretaker, profoundly influences both the structure and function of the developing infant’s brain. Failed attachment, whether caused by abuse, neglect or emotional unavailability on the part of the caretaker, can negatively impact brain structure and function, causing developmental or relational trauma) CONCLUSION

On basis of above details it is apparent that there is significant impact of early deprivation and trauma in subsequent development process. Early-life deprivation and trauma affects emotional well-being. Future self-esteem, social awareness, ability to learn and physical health child

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