About My Health Careers Internship MedBlogs Contact us
Medindia LOGIN REGISTER
Advertisement

War-Scarred Children Less Likely To Forgive And Forget

by Medindia Content Team on August 3, 2007 at 4:41 PM
Font : A-A+

War-Scarred Children Less Likely To Forgive And Forget

Tens of thousands of the estimated 250,000 child soldiers worldwide are abused or have been abused during the last decade in Africa's Great Lakes Region, according to background information in the article. Christophe Pierre Bayer, L.L.B., of University Clinic Hamburg, Germany, and colleagues conducted a study to assess the prevalence of PTSD symptoms in 169 former Ugandan and Congolese child soldiers and to examine how PTSD symptoms are associated with these children's openness to reconciliation and feelings of revenge on the person or group they consider their enemy.

The participants, age 11-18 years, were living in rehabilitation centers in Uganda and the Democratic Republic of the Congo at the time of the study in 2005.

Advertisement

Of the 169 former child soldiers interviewed, 34.9 percent met symptom criteria for PTSD. Children who showed clinically relevant symptoms of PTSD had significantly less openness to reconciliation and significantly more feelings of revenge than those with fewer symptoms.

The children reported that they had been (violently) recruited by armed forces at a young age (average, 12 years), had served an average of 38 months, and had been demobilized an average of 2.3 months before participating in this study. They reported having been exposed to a high level of potentially traumatic events (average, 11.1).
Advertisement

The most commonly reported traumatic experiences were having witnessed shooting, having witnessed someone being wounded, and having been seriously beaten. A total of 54.4 percent reported having killed someone, and 27.8 percent reported that they were forced to engage in sexual contact.

"The results of this study cannot determine whether openness to reconciliation and fewer feelings of revenge are inner personal characteristics that prevent PTSD symptoms or whether PTSD symptoms mediate the openness to reconciliation and feelings of revenge. However, our findings indicate that mental distress and mental illness, namely, symptoms of PTSD, are associated with war-affected children's attitudes toward reconciliation and could therefore impose barriers to sustainable and long-term peace building.

Hence, the results of this study support the need to fulfill the obligation under the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child to promote psychological recovery for war-affected children, such as child soldiers," the authors conclude.

Source: Eurekalert
LIN/B
Advertisement

Advertisement
News A-Z
A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z
News Category
What's New on Medindia
Goji Berries May Protect Against Age-Related Vision Loss
Tapping — A Proven Self-Applied Stress Intervention
Black Pepper as Preventive Measure Against Omicron
View all

Medindia Newsletters Subscribe to our Free Newsletters!
Terms & Conditions and Privacy Policy.

More News on:
Height and Weight-Kids 

Recommended Reading
First Drug for Post-traumatic Stress Disorder
Molecular mechanism that governs the formation of fears stemming from traumatic events....

Disclaimer - All information and content on this site are for information and educational purposes only. The information should not be used for either diagnosis or treatment or both for any health related problem or disease. Always seek the advice of a qualified physician for medical diagnosis and treatment. Full Disclaimer

© All Rights Reserved 1997 - 2022

This site uses cookies to deliver our services. By using our site, you acknowledge that you have read and understand our Cookie Policy, Privacy Policy, and our Terms of Use
open close
CONSULT A DOCTOR
I have read and I do accept terms of use - Telemedicine

Advantage Medindia: FREE subscription for 'Personalised Health & Wellness website with consultation' (Value Rs.300/-)