Sexually Abused Children and Dissociation

Sexual abuse history in children is significantly associated with dissociation. Sexual abuse and dissociation are associated with suicidality, self-mutilation, and sexual aggression. Dissociation has an important mediating role between sexual abuse and psychiatric disturbance. Therefore dissociation may be a critical mediator of psychiatric symptoms and risk-taking behaviour among sexually abused children. The assessment and treatment of…

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PTSD relief with Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation – Magnetic Therapy Helps Alleviate Stress Disorder

New research suggests that repeat stimulation of certain brain regions with magnets can help alleviate the symptoms of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), a debilitating psychiatric condition that can occur after exposure to life-threatening events, such as military combat or violent personal assault.

A region of the brain called the prefrontal cortex has an “important role in mediating responses to stressful situations,” Dr. Hagit Cohen and colleagues from Ben-Gurion University of the Negev in Beer Sheva, Israel note in the American Journal of Psychiatry.

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Sexual Abuse in Girls Leads to Later Substance Abuse

Young girls who are forced to have sex are three times more likely to develop psychiatric disorders or abuse alcohol and drugs in adulthood, than girls who are not sexually abused, researchers report. The study, which involved more than 1,400 adult female twins, found that the sibling who was abused had a consistently higher risk of psychiatric disorders, such as depression and bulimia, despite being raised in the same family and having the same genetic makeup as her sister.

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Sexually Abused Children at Risk For Subsequent Problems

Young children who have been sexually abused are significantly more likely than non-abused children to develop behavioral, educational and chronic health problems over time, according to findings published in the August issue of the Archives of Disease in Childhood. Dr. C. J. Hobbs, of St. James’s University Hospital, Leeds, UK, and colleagues studied outcomes of 140 children identified in 1989 as having been sexually abused at the age of 7 years or younger, compared with 83 other children who were classmates at the time of diagnosis.

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Evidence Mixed on Abused Becoming Abusers

Children who suffer physical abuse at the hands of their parents are widely thought to be more likely than non-abused kids to harm their own children as adults. But a review of scientific studies on the topic shows that there is only limited evidence to support this claim. Dr. Ilgi Ozturk Ertem and colleagues at Yale University School of Medicine in New Haven, Connecticut, searched the medical literature for studies on the presence of child abuse in two generations.

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Abused Women Experience More Illness

Women who have experienced abuse in childhood or as adults are far more likely than are other women to develop common illnesses, according to results of a Swedish study. “The manifestations and forms of violence vary in different settings, and virtually wherever this issue has been researched an under-recognized burden has been unveiled,” according to Dr. Gunilla Krantz from the Nordic School of Public Health in Goteborg and Dr. Per-Olof Ostergren from Malmo University Hospital in Sweden.

The investigators examined the link between violence and abuse during childhood or adulthood and the development of common symptoms in 397 women aged 40 to 50 years.

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Bullying and Victimization in Childhood Linked to Psychiatric Disorders in Early Adulthood

August 9, 2007 — Bullying and victimization during early school years may identify boys at risk for psychiatric disorders in early adulthood, according to the results of a study reported in the August issue of Pediatrics.”There have been no longitudinal cohort studies that examined the psychiatric outcomes in late adolescence or early adulthood of children who bully or are victimized in childhood,” write Andre Sourander, MD, from Turku University in Finland, and colleagues. “Generally, our knowledge of the continuities and discontinuities of childhood problems to early adulthood was based on a limited number of study cohorts.

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Child Abuse Linked to Migraine with Major Depression

Research suggests that women who have suffered child abuse may be predisposed to a potentially debilitating combination of migraine accompanied by depression. It was found women with migraines and who were diagnosed with major depression were twice as likely as those with migraine alone to report having been sexually abused as a child. Furthermore, if…

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Trauma & Children’s Reactions

Trauma is a sudden and threatening event for children, as it is for adults. Trauma disturbs basic assumptions that children have about the world, namely, that the world is a safe and controllable place. Often, among children, reactions to trauma are quite intense since they may feel helpless and often do not understand what is going on around them. Trauma also upsets the delicate balance of parent-child relationships; the child’s confidence that his parent will always be able to protect him may be disturbed, and the parent’s sense of his role as protector may be severely undermined.

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Abused Women Experience More Illness

Women who have experienced abuse in childhood or as adults are far more likely than are other women to develop common illnesses, according to results of a Swedish study. “The manifestations and forms of violence vary in different settings, and virtually wherever this issue has been researched an under-recognized burden has been unveiled,” according to Dr. Gunilla Krantz from the Nordic School of Public Health in Goteborg and Dr. Per-Olof Ostergren from Malmo University Hospital in Sweden.

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PTSD & Comorbidities

Posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) commonly co-occurs with other psychiatric disorders. Data from epidemiologic surveys indicate that the vast majority of individuals with PTSD meet criteria for at least one other psychiatric disorder, and a substantial percentage have 3 or more other psychiatric diagnoses. A number of different hypothetical constructs have been posited to explain this high comorbidity; for example, the self-medication hypothesis has often been applied to understand the relationship between PTSD and substance use disorders.

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Posttraumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD)

The fourth edition of Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-IV) defines posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) as a reaction to an event, either personally experienced or witnessed, that involves actual or threatened death or serious injury or a threat to the physical integrity of self or others.

As well, the response to the traumatic event must involve intense fear, helplessness, or horror.

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