The aftermath of violence: Children, disaster, and posttraumatic stress disorder

Tener Goodwin Veenema, Kathryn Schroeder-Bruce

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Terrorist attacks, situations of armed conflict, and all forms of catastrophe tax our abilities to cope, understand, and respond. Because of their developmental status, children are even more emotionally vulnerable to the devastating effects of a disaster. When tragedy strikes a family, community, or the nation, helping children cope and regain a sense of safety is critical. A child with posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) develops symptoms such as intense fear, disorganized and agitated behavior, emotional numbness, anxiety, or depression after being directly exposed to or witnessing an extreme traumatic situation involving threatened death or serious injury. Victims of repeated abuse or children who live in violent neighborhoods or war zones, or who have witnessed extensive media coverage of violent events, may experience PTSD.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)235-244
Number of pages10
JournalJournal of Pediatric Health Care
Issue number5
StatePublished - Jan 1 2002
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health


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