The loss of a close family member is always traumatic. But, in case of kids it is more than passing trauma.
According to latest research published in the Schizophrenia Research, the death of a sibling or a parent can actually trigger mental health illness like schizophrenia and bipolar disorder. The risk is very high and palpable.
Newsmedical.net reports the findings of the report. For the purpose of the research scientists used data from the Finnish Population Register and the Cause of Death Register. Approximately 11,855 individuals, born in Helsinki between 1960 and 1990, were closely studied. All the participants were exposed to the death of a father or sibling before the age of 5 years.
Researchers Mary Clarke (Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland, Dublin) and team said,
Our findings are in keeping with accumulating evidence which indicates that exposure to stress during early development can increase the risk of psychotic illness among those exposed.
After taking into account the gender differences, age at which the participant was exposed to death, age at follow up, and parental history of psychiatric disorders, the researchers discovered that those with a father or sibling who died suddenly were 1.6 times more likely to develop bipolar disorder and 1.3 times more likely to develop schizophrenia than those whose relatives died from illness-related causes.
Sharing her conclusion, Clarke et al told Schizophrenia Research,
Our data suggests that the mode of death is important – sudden and violent death of a parent or sibling at an early developmental stage increases the risk of severe mental illness in those exposed.
How does one avoid the risk of psychotic illness in case of sudden bereavement in the immediate family? Watch the child, and take special effort to address the child’s emotional and mental needs. If needed, take the kid to the mental health professional to know how the kid can be best handled.
- Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) Coexisting With Mental Illness Increases Suicide Risks: New Study Results
- Anders Grontved and Frank Hu, ‘Television Viewing Increases Risk of Diabetes, Heart Disease and Death.’ Take Note Couch Potatoes
- Laura’s Law – New Law For People Suffering From Mental Illness
- What is Schizoaffective Disorder Bipolar Type (Symptoms, Diagnosis, Treatment)?
- Schizoaffective Disorder, Bipolar, Schizophrenia – One and Same? – Part 2