New Study Reveals PTSD in Children Whose Parents are Injured

On Behalf of | Jul 31, 2014 | Personal Injury

A recent study concluded that when a parent has been injured, their child may be at risk of developing post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). The study was conducted by researchers from University of Washington School of Medicine in Seattle, who examined 175 parents and their school-aged children who were patients at a Seattle trauma center.

The primary cause of accidents bringing parents and children to the hospital was motor vehicle accidents. This was followed by falls and burns.

The researchers looked at four different groups:

  • Instances where both the parent and the child were injured at the same event
  • Instances where only the child was injured in an event
  • Instances where only the parent was injured at an event
  • Neither parent nor child had received any significant injuries (per study’s criteria)

The study held follow-up visits with participants five months after the initial hospital visits and again at 12 months.

The results revealed that children who were not injured, but whose parents were injured, were two times more likely to suffer from PTSD than those children whose parents were not injured. Approximately 20 percent of those participating in the study showed PTSD symptoms five months after the incident.

In fact, uninjured children with injured parents showed a higher percent of PTSD symptoms than those children who had actually been injured themselves.

However, the study also found that the group of injured children with injured parents took longer to recover both physically and emotionally than those injured children whose parents were not injured.

Symptoms of PTSD in children can include bedwetting, being very attached or clingy to the parent, trouble sleeping or bad dreams, acting out or destructive behaviors.

As the results of this study indicate, when a person is injured in an accident, the whole family can be affected by the stress that an accident can cause. If you’ve been injured in an accident caused by someone else’s negligence, contact a New Braunfels personal injury attorney to find out what compensation you may be entitled to for pain and loss.