The UK Trauma Council has created a guide for parents and carers sharing the latest research looking at how changes in the brain following childhood trauma can affect a child’s social world.
The guide explains how the social world – relationships with others – is the key to everyone’s mental health. Children who have experienced complex trauma are more likely to grow up in a more stressful and lonelier social world. Experience of trauma can make it harder for children to build the secure and trusted relationships that they need to grow and thrive. These children are more likely to be rejected by their peers at school and experience bullying, and to have adult relationships that involve more stress, violence and conflict.
When a child’s social world becomes more stressful, with fewer trusted relationships, this increases the child’s vulnerability to mental health problems.
However, this pathway is not fixed. By being more aware of a child’s potential social difficulties, we are in a much better position to be able to help them to build and maintain supportive social relationships. Supporting children to develop a ‘positive and protective social architecture’ provides them with a solid foundation for good mental health which can last a lifetime.
The full guide can be found here: https://uktraumacouncil.org/resource/childhood-trauma-and-the-social-world