A. Trauma Impacts a Child’s Development and Health

1. Altered Biological Stress Systems and Neural Circuitry/Structure

•   Difficulties with poor emotional regulation, focus and self-control (when in fight or flight mode, the brain loses executive functions that do not serve fight or flight, like higher learning and problem-solving which contribute substantially to school success)

•   Anxious and avoidant behaviors

•   Potential impacts to self-efficacy

2. Disruptions in Attachment Behavior

•   Disruptions in relationships

•   Distrust of people in authority, seen as threats

3. Changes in Social Development and Understanding of Social Stimuli

•   Altered encoding and interpreting of social stimuli

•   Hostile attribution bias (child perceivers negative motives, facial expressions, body language)

•   Larger repertoire of aggressive responses

•   Aggression as an acceptable response

•   Difficulties belonging and playing well with others

4. Behaviorally, Trauma Can Look Like Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder

(ADHD), Oppositional Defiant Disorder (ODD), and/or Conduct Disorder and Can Lead to:

•   Substance use/abuse

•   Aggression

•   Numbness

•   Risk taking

•   Delinquency and adult offending