Childhood Trauma

2108 Words9 Pages
The issues surrounding children’s behaviour after a traumatic experience are complex, multifactorial and often hugely controversial. Having considered the literature on the subject, one could be forgiven for believing that there are as many opinions on the issues as there are people considering the issues. In this review we have attempted to cover as many of the major areas as possible in order to present a reasonably comprehensive overview of the subject. The definition of a traumatic experience is subjective from both the point of view of the child concerned and also form the observer. Some commentators have suggested that the only workable definition of a traumatic experience is one that, by definition, produces demonstrable…show more content…
The converse argument, or perhaps an extension of the argument, is presented by Thambirajah (1998) who takes the view that many papers on ADHD (and by inference he is referring to the one reviewed above), regard the syndrome as being a diagnosis made simply by checking an appropriate number of boxes on a check-list. He asserts that factors such as biopsychological circumstances should be weighed equally strongly as the symptom cluster of impulsivity, inattention or hyperactivity. (Tannock 1998) In direct contrast to the preceding paper he states that early traumatic experiences, current abuse or even depression of the mother may all be contributory factors in the aetiology of the condition. He argues that taking no account of these factors is to ignore much of the accumulated evidence and wisdom on the subject. He also makes a very valid point that to ignore these factors and only to use the check-list approach means that here is an over-reliance on the significance of these symptoms and, as a direct result, this leads to an overestimation of prevalence. He points to the obviously erroneous estimate of a study that was based exclusively on check list symptomatology, of 15% (although the study is not quoted). The author makes the very valid point that most psychiatrists would agree that the hyperkinetic disorder is a
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