Childhood is a time for playdates and learning, a time for big dreams and imaginary adventures. Safety and security should not be questions that linger in uncertainty. However, this is not the case for many children across the globe. Thousands of children from all walks of life each day are faced with unspeakable horror and must deal with the resulting trauma from then on. However, in children, managing this trauma takes a different toll on the mind and heart than it does in adults. While the type of trauma may vary in pervasiveness across countries, trauma occurring in childhood has the ability to cause long term damage to the growing neurological functioning in the brain and negatively influence children’s spiritual development, wounding
Fear Controls a Whole Town During the Salem witch trials, many lives that were taken due to a few people’s self defence. In the book, The Crucible, by Arthur Miller, a group of girls caused a whole town to go array. This group of girls were caught naked, dancing and
Such toxic stress can have damaging effects on learning, behavior, and health across the lifespan. Learning how to cope with adversity is an important part of healthy child development. The most effective prevention is to reduce exposure of young children to extremely stressful conditions. Research also indicates that supportive, responsive relationships with caring adults as early in life as possible can prevent or reverse the damaging effects of toxic stress response (Center on Developing Child, nd). By establishing clear lines of communication between adults and children, and home and school, parents and teachers can help to shape children’s perceptions in informed ways. During times of trouble, when emotions run high, parents and teachers can help children develop the skills necessary to manage their feelings, to confront unpleasant or adverse realities, and to acquire greater emotional stability. In order to support children in better understanding their world, adults may have to help them come to terms with circumstances that are frightening, confusing, overwhelming, or possibly unrelated to their past experience. By providing a safe and supportive environment and a healthy acceptance of all that is good in life, a calm and ready-to-listen adult can facilitate children’s well being, and help to alleviate the fear, dismay or confusion they may feel. In doing so, it is important to honor and nurture children’s sensitivity. Although parents and teachers cannot shelter children from all adversity, they are well positioned to help children learn about the imbalances in the world, to better comprehend their impact, and to find thoughtful ways to strike a comfortable and meaningful balance of their own (Foster & Matthews,
It impacts the maturation of specific brain areas at particular ages, the physiological and neuro-endocrinological responses as well as impacting the ability to coordinate cognitions, behaviours and emotional regulation. Therefore, the effect of trauma is different in different developmental stages. Ornitz (1996) has listed critical periods of major structural changes in brain development in accordance with Piaget’s stages of cognitive development. This includes the periods between early childhood (1.5-4 years), late childhood (6-10 years), puberty and mid-adolescence. This ensures that there are widespread implications of trauma in childhood especially in terms of the age at which exposure to trauma occurs as well as the areas of the brain affected. For example, the volume of the brain shows a rapid increase in first two years (Matsuzawa et al., 2001), a time when the development of attachment also takes place. Moreover, this growth is more experience- dependent (Schore, 2001). Children below the age of two also show a greater right brain than left brain
At young ages, children can be influenced greatly by the things they see around them. A child’s mind is easily influenced at young ages. Fear is a major influence that can shape the way a young girl/boy grows up. In the article “Why boys become Vicious”, Golding states, “when people are afraid they discover the violence within” (Golding).
When children experience a traumatic event, not only does it affect their emotions but it can affect many areas of development if not all of them. Equally, health and learning difficulties can also have a less desirable effect on holistic development. By looking at how such factors can affect child development, we can work towards finding a suitable learning method and helping children overcome and recover from their experiences.
impressionable to early life experiences. If those experiences include repeated trauma of abuse or neglect, optimal brain development and function is threatened. Chronic activation of a child’s stress response system affects The prominent symptoms of depression are low mood, sleep and appetite disturbances, and diminished interest in daily activities. Carr continued, “Major depression is an episodic disorder characterized by major depressive episodes and intervening periods of normal mood” (2007, p.3). Early life trauma is considered a significant precursor of depression (LaNoue, Graeber, Hernandez, Warner & Helitzer, 2010). Childhood trauma affects many brain systems. The stress response system and its cosystems pay the greatest toll when a child experiences chronic threat. Taking a closer look at the
Long-noncoding RNAs in the Consolidation and Extinction of Fear Memories Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) is a psychiatric disorder that can occur following witnessing or experiencing life-threatening events such as military combat and serious accidents. PTSDs are marked with clear biological changes and psychiatric symptoms and there is now increasing evidence that the persistence of this disorder may be related to the inability of patients to overcome the fearful experiences through a process called extinction. PTSD patients also likely develop other mental illnesses such as depression, drug abuse and problems with memory and cognition. Several studies have shown that deficits in fear extinction contribute to PTSD. The classical conditioning
The cycle of abuse is studied by many, and researcher Coates (2010) explains the trauma of childhood abuse. The trauma that comes with being physically or sexually abused as a child has an immense impact on the children’s behavior, social skills, their thinking, and even physical function (392). Studies conducted by Coates suggest that child abuse effect the brain in ways that no one would even imagine. Child abuse specifically alters the limbic system, which contains the amygdala, hippocampus, cerebral cortex, and the corpus callosum (394). To better comprehend the significance of these discoveries, learning how the brain reacts, especially when faced with threat, is quite obligatory.
Child Maltreatment Historical Perspective From a historical perspective, child maltreatment has varied in form depending the time and place and the standing of which children hold within family and society. Child maltreatment as defined by the, includes physical, sexual, or emotional abuse, in addition to neglect (National Institution, 2011). Early childhood experiences create the basis for expression of intelligence, emotions, and personality (National Institution, 2011). When these experiences are predominantly negative, the stage is set for emotional, developmental, and behavioral problems that persist throughout life. Studies have shown that the brains of children who have experienced long-lasting abuse and neglect remain in a state of "hyper-arousal" or anticipation of forthcoming danger. This hyper-arousal may affect learning and the ability to form emotional bonds with others (National Institution, 2011). In the book Children and criminality, Flowers give a historical background of child maltreatment leading to his findings of how the treatment of children was and is based on seven distinct premises; (1) the value of children in a given time and place (2) how they fit into the structure of society; (3) religious beliefs and superstitions; (4) exploitation; (5) societal ideology; (6) economic stresses; and (7) psychological and societal induced stresses (Flowers, 1986).
According to the Administration for Children and Families (2013), there are one million verified cases of childhood maltreatment reported annually in the United States. This constitutes approximately 35% of the childhood population in the United States. Of these cases, 79.5% were the result of neglect, emotional abuse, and
KNOWLEDGE, SKILLS, AND ABILITIES There are many different skills and abilities that an individual will need before engaging in a careen in Early Childhood Education. You must have great communication skills to communicate back and forth with the child, as well as the family. You must have the ability to work well with others and have patience for children and families. You must understand that each child is different in their own special way. Being consistent and modeling for children and families is equally as important. Showing enthusiasm for learning and teaching are also some great qualities an early childhood educator should have.
Trauma and the Effects on Neural Development In Bremner’s (2007) article, he states that “Traumatic stress has a broad range of effects on brain function and structure, as well as on neuropsychological components of memory” (p. 455). Specifically, the areas of the brain that are affected by a trauma response include the amygdala, hippocampus, prefrontal cortex, and, the neurochemical systems. Therefore, neurologically speaking, when trauma is experienced, it changes how the brain transmits, interprets the event and stores the information. In addition, Broderick (2015), states that physiological and neuropsychological changes are also evident in children who have experienced risk. For example, DRD4 indicates higher levels of aggression, 5-HTT indicates anxiety and depression, the child can experience weak verbal, problem solving skills, and, become unable to understand the consequences, of their reactions to feeling at risk (p. 276).
What causes fear is a warning trigger as a cause of the 2-system-view that produces an instinctive biological reaction to an environmental trigger stimulus. Also, the cognitive system reaction of emotional stimuli may cause a response through interpretative and social, subjective on the basis of one’s experience through events. Therefore, fear may be an emotional reaction to causal life events or stimulus, coping and response strategies initiate and activate responses. For example, fear triggers fight or flight, raises cortisol levels in the brain, and initiates emotional and physical reactions. The emotion of fear may cause different effects, for example, with positive affect; there may be a cause to seek safety in a dangerous situation or
It is well understood that the influence on child vulnerability stems from their environment of basic social, emotional, physical, and cultural developmental needs met both in their micro and macro system. These influences can create conditions that can migrate into a range of abnormal adult behaviors such as; fears of intimacy, aggression, lack of trust, addictions, aggressive relationships, and phobias initiated from childhood fears (New Zealand Ministry of Social Development, 2012). This paper describes the fear in children observed as they develop from an early age, including not only fears that arise from the consequences of their own experiences, but also by means of threat information described as seeing or hearing frightening