Nav: Home

Exposure to terrorist attacks increases mental health problems in children

December 20, 2007

Riverside Drive, N.Y. - December 20, 2007 - A new report published in Clinical Psychology: Science and Practice reveals that children exposed to terrorist attacks show elevated symptoms of mental health problems, including posttraumatic stress disorder, separation anxiety disorder, and general anxiety disorder.

Statistically speaking, it is unlikely that the majority of youth will ever experience direct exposure to a terrorist attack. Following a terrorist attack, however, youth are exposed to a substantial amount of attack-related media coverage.

Within this present climate of heightened awareness about terrorism, many children are exposed to what the authors termed "second-hand terrorism," in which media disproportionately focus on the possibility of being a direct victim of future terrorism. This sets the stage for insecurity, countless false alarms, and persistent anxiety.

Technological advances provide a stage from which terrorist acts can reach a truly vast audience, and news networks further afford unprecedented coverage of terrorism on a global scale. Media-based contact with terrorism can result in substantial amounts of distress in exposed youth.

"Researching youth in the aftermath of terrorist attacks, as well as youth exposed to media presentations about terrorism, is critical to inform service delivery and public policy, and to ensure that the mental health needs of youth are afforded ample resources," the authors note.
-end-
This study is published in the journal Clinical Psychology: Science and Practice. Media wishing to receive a PDF of this article may contact journalnews@bos.blackwellpublishing.net.

Jonathan S. Comer is affiliated with Columbia University and the New York State Psychiatric Institute. He can be reached for questions at joncomer@temple.edu.

Clinical Psychology: Science and Practice presents cutting-edge developments in the science and practice of clinical psychology by publishing scholarly topical reviews of research, theory, and application to diverse areas of the field, including assessment, intervention, service delivery, and professional issues.

Wiley-Blackwell was formed in February 2007 as a result of the acquisition of Blackwell Publishing Ltd. by John Wiley & Sons, Inc., and its merger with Wiley's Scientific, Technical, and Medical business. Together, the companies have created a global publishing business with deep strength in every major academic and professional field. Wiley-Blackwell publishes approximately 1,400 scholarly peer-reviewed journals and an extensive collection of books with global appeal. For more information on Wiley-Blackwell, please visit www.blackwellpublishing.com or http://interscience.wiley.com.

Blackwell Publishing Ltd.

Related Mental Health Articles:

Food insecurity can affect your mental health
Food insecurity (FI) affects nearly 795 million people worldwide. Although a complex phenomenon encompassing food availability, affordability, utilization, and even the social norms that define acceptable ways to acquire food, FI can affect people's health beyond its impact on nutrition.
Climate change's toll on mental health
When people think about climate change, they probably think first about its effects on the environment, and possibly on their physical health.
Quantifying nature's mental health benefits
The BioScience Talks podcast features discussions of topical issues related to the biological sciences.
Sexism may be harmful to men's mental health
Men who see themselves as playboys or as having power over women are more likely to have psychological problems than men who conform less to traditionally masculine norms, according to research published by the American Psychological Association.
Mental health matters
UCSB researchers study the effectiveness of an innovative program designed to help youth learn about mental health.
Could mental math boost emotional health?
Engaging the brain's dorsolateral prefrontal cortex (DL-PFC) while doing mental math may be connected with better emotional health, according to Duke researchers.
Program will train mental health providers, improve health care in rural Missouri
A new graduate education program at the University of Missouri has received nearly $700,000 from the Health Resources and Services Administration in the US Department of Health and Human Services to train psychology doctoral candidates in integrated, primary health care settings, in an effort to improve health care for underserved populations with mental health and physical disorders.
Loss of employer-based health insurance in early retirement affects mental, physical health
The loss of private health insurance from an employer can lead to poorer mental and physical health as older adults transition to early retirement, according to a study by Georgia State University.
Ocean views linked to better mental health
Here's another reason to start saving for that beach house: new research suggests that residents with a view of the water are less stressed.
New study shows electronic health records often capture incomplete mental health data
This study compares information available in a typical electronic health record (EHR) with data from insurance claims, focusing on diagnoses, visits, and hospital care for depression and bipolar disorder.

Related Mental Health Reading:

Best Science Podcasts 2019

We have hand picked the best science podcasts for 2019. Sit back and enjoy new science podcasts updated daily from your favorite science news services and scientists.
Now Playing: TED Radio Hour

Climate Crisis
There's no greater threat to humanity than climate change. What can we do to stop the worst consequences? This hour, TED speakers explore how we can save our planet and whether we can do it in time. Guests include climate activist Greta Thunberg, chemical engineer Jennifer Wilcox, research scientist Sean Davis, food innovator Bruce Friedrich, and psychologist Per Espen Stoknes.
Now Playing: Science for the People

#527 Honey I CRISPR'd the Kids
This week we're coming to you from Awesome Con in Washington, D.C. There, host Bethany Brookshire led a panel of three amazing guests to talk about the promise and perils of CRISPR, and what happens now that CRISPR babies have (maybe?) been born. Featuring science writer Tina Saey, molecular biologist Anne Simon, and bioethicist Alan Regenberg. A Nobel Prize winner argues banning CRISPR babies won’t work Geneticists push for a 5-year global ban on gene-edited babies A CRISPR spin-off causes unintended typos in DNA News of the first gene-edited babies ignited a firestorm The researcher who created CRISPR twins defends...