Sadly, over two million American kids aged 15 or under experience accidents every single year.
And with more than 76,000 kids under the age of 14 ending up with injuries so serious they are admitted to a hospital, the consequences – both emotional and physical can be severe. As CNN reports, it’s essential that both officials and families look out for – and step up to help – in the aftermath of serious incidents like car crashes or similar.
Yet dealing with the psychological fall out is easier said than done. A child might be struggling at kindergarten or school as a result of memories of the incident, or they may be exhibiting worrying signs of isolation or sadness. None of these are easy problems, but they are solvable – especially through support and talking.
Identifying the problem – and the solution
For very young children, the issue might be that they don’t have the words to express how they’re feeling. They may just say that they feel sad, and so it could take time to build up their trust and allow them to speak. For slightly older children, the consequences of emotional trauma could be more tangible – like withdrawal from previously enjoyed activities. In both cases, ongoing but gentle support is needed to keep kids on the right track.
The forms of support that you can offer a child who has experienced trauma. For some children, what’s needed is physical support. In the aftermath of the tragic loss of a parent, for example, a relative may be able to take a child in. For other kids, it’s mainly emotional support that’s needed. And some children may also need legal support of some kind, too. As law firm Tait and Hall has pointed out, personal injury claims can sometimes be brought in all sorts of cases ranging from dog bites to negligence – so it may be worth speaking to an attorney on behalf of a child who’s gone through something rough.
Consult an expert
In some particularly severe cases, however, it’s necessary to speak to a professional in order to get the help you need. With people who have experienced trauma as a younger person being 15 times more likely to take their own lives later on, this could be a move that saves your child’s life. In the first instance, speaking to your child’s pediatrician is a good idea: that way, you’ll be able to get pointed in the right direction towards child psychiatry services or something similar. You may have to take your child in to the appointment, so it may be worth taking a toy or their favorite teddy to help them through it.
When a child experiences trauma, there’s a real risk to their health and future prospects. But with the right support, it’s possible to solve the problem. Whether it’s engaging the services of an expert or simply being there to talk, there’s a lot you can do to help.