Children under Siege: Pre-adolescence, PTSD, and Violent Conditions

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2014-01-21

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The paper analyzes the evolution of the diagnostic criteria for posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) since its introduction in 1980 by reviewing its developmental consequences for pre-adolescent children. Although the recently published DSM-5 offers a more developmentally conscientious approach to children's responses following traumatic exposure, it needs more structural consistency that better reflects current research on pre-adolescent capacities to manage stress and child-specific expressions of distress. (1) The DSM-r presents preschool PTSD as the only developmental subtype of the disorder despite the fact that childhood development also differentiates traumatic expressions in older children from adolescents and adults. (2) Many of the PTSD epidemiological data that have been reanalyzed under the most recent typology only refer to adolescent and adult samples although many researchers have demonstrated that developmental alterations to DSM-IV and DSM-IV-TR criteria produce significantly higher prevalence rates in children.

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Pits, Elisabeth (2014). Children under Siege: Pre-adolescence, PTSD, and Violent Conditions. Honors thesis, Duke University. Retrieved from https://hdl.handle.net/10161/8317.


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