Collin-Vézina, D., Coleman, K., Milne, L., Sell, J., & Daigneault, I. (2011). Trauma Experiences, Maltreatment-Related Impairments, and Resilience Among Child Welfare Youth in Residential Care. International Journal of Mental Health and Addiction, 9(5), 577-589.
This study examines the trauma experiences, trauma-related sequels, and resilience features of a sample of Canadian youth residing in residential care facilities. Additionally, authors explore the relationship between gender and trauma.
A convenience sample (n=53) of youth aged 14 to 17 was recruited from six child welfare residential care facilities for participation in the study. Measures of trauma, trauma symptoms, and resiliency of the youth revealed high rates of experiencing maltreatment and neglect. Girls were more likely to report sexual abuse and to exhibit sexual concerns, posttraumatic stress, and dissociation symptoms than their male counterparts.
Multiple forms of trauma were related to higher clinical levels of depression, anger, posttraumatic stress, and dissociation, as well as to lower individual, relational, and community resilience features.
Fuller-Thomson, E., & Sawyer, J. (2012). Is the cluster risk model of parental adversities better than the cumulative risk model as an indicator of childhood physical abuse?: Findings from two representative community surveys. Child: Care, Health and Development
In order to improve identification of children at risk of childhood physical abuse (CPA) screening strategies need to be improved. This study compares cluster (the type of risk factors is key) and cumulative (the number of risk factors is key) models of risk indicators (i.e., parental divorce, parental unemployment, substance addiction). Data were drawn from Statistics Canada National Population Health Survey (NPHS) (1994-1995) and Canadian Community Health Survey (CCHS) 3.1 (2005). Participants aged 18 and over who answered questions about childhood experiences.
The prevalence of CPA for respondents from CCHS who did not report any of the three selected risk indicators was 3.4%, and was also 3.4% for risk-free respondents from NPHS. The prevalence of CPA for who experienced parental divorce only was 8.3% (CCHS) and 10.7% (NPHS); for respondent who had experienced parental unemployment only the prevalence of CPA was 8.9% and 9.7% respectively.; and for those who had experienced parental substance addiction alone the prevalence of CPA increased to 18.0% (CCHS) and 19.5%(NPHS). The presence of all three risk indicators increased the prevalence of CPA to 36.0% and41.0%.
Authors conclude that a cumulative model is a better option as a first-stage screening tool in order to identify CPA. Rather than physicians solely assessing the physical and trauma-related injuries associated with abuse, in order to gain more insight into the potential for CPA doctors are encouraged to inquire about parental substance addiction, parental unemployment, and parental divorce.
Naicker, K., Mickham, M., & Colman, I. (2012). Timing of first exposure to maternal depression and adolescent emotional disorder in a National Canadian cohort. PLoS ONE, 7(3), 1-6.
Maternal depression is identified as a risk factor for childhood psychopathology. This paper investigated whether the time period of initial exposure to maternal depression differs according to its influence on later adolescent emotional disorders. The study analyzed data (n=937) from the National Longitudinal Survey of Children and Youth (NLSCY), a longitudinal study established by Statistics Canada in 1994/5 to investigate child health and development. Adolescent (i.e., gender, chronic health conditions, stressful life events, low household SES) and maternal characteristics (i.e., marital status, chronic health conditions, heavy alcohol use, social support, more than one depressive episode, currently depressed) were analyzed according to whether they significantly influence the likelihood of an adolescent emotional disorder between the ages of 12 to 13 years. Results suggest that there is a sensitive time period of initial exposure to maternal depression. Specifically, children initially exposed to maternal depression between the ages of two and five years old were significantly more likely to experience symptoms of depression and anxiety in adolescence when compared to their unexposed counterparts.