Mental health is just as important as physical health to a child's well-being.

Mental health is just as important as physical health to a child's well-being.

When should I worry about my child’s reaction to a traumatic event?

It is important to understand that most children will likely develop some stress reactions if they have been the victim of a traumatic experience. In many cases, some acute reactions are normal for a child in the aftermath of a recent traumatic event. These reactions should get better over time. However, not all children will experience child traumatic stress. Whether or not a child develops difficulties depends upon the individual child, the severity of the event, and whether or not the child has a history of previous trauma exposure or mental health concerns. It is also important what kind of support he/she has at home and that the parent or caregivers can help the child cope. If the child’s traumatic stress reactions get worse, not better, over a long period of time after the event, the parent/caregiver should seek help.   As a first step, it is helpful to consult with a mental health provider who can conduct a trauma-focused assessment and offer the appropriate treatment. Although it can be a difficult first step to take, children often respond well to trauma-focused treatment and symptoms can begin to improve in several months.  Click here to search from a list of providers in Connecticut.

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