Trauma can have a profound impact on children. Trauma is an anxiety disorder. As with anxiety disorders, children can often be misdiagnosed as having ADD/ADHD. PTSD can develop after a terrifying ordeal that involves harm or the perception of harm. The key word here is "terrifying." What one person considers terrifying may not be terrifying to another person.
Generally, when people experience trauma, there are three main symptoms. These symptoms of PTSD include: re-experiencing the event (e.g., bad dreams, frightening thoughts, etc.), avoidance of the experience (e.g., staying away from places, events, or objects that are reminders, emotionally, numb, etc.), and hyperarousal (being easily startled, having difficulty sleeping, etc.) Children who have developed PTSD can also regress and start bed wetting, forgetting or being unable to talk, or unusually clingy with the parents.
Symptoms of Trauma
- Rage or aggressive behavior
- Unreasonable fear
- Easily startled
- Overly bossy or controlling
- Avoidance of people, places, or situations