USA Today (2/11, Healy) reports that according to a review published Feb. 11 in the journal Pediatrics, “better studies are needed to identify effective treatments for kids exposed to traumatic events, such as accidents, natural disasters and school shootings.” In fact, “in the analysis of 6,647 research abstracts on psychological and pharmacological therapies, only a few psychological treatments were shown to help kids 17 and under in the short term, and no medications were shown to have benefit.” The article adds, “The Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality, operated by the US Department of Health and Human Services, commissioned the study ‘to identify gaps in the current scientific literature and highlight important areas for future research,’ according to the journal report.”
The AP (2/11) reports, “According to research cited in the report, about two-thirds of US children and teens younger than 18 will experience at least one traumatic event, including shootings and other violence, car crashes and weather disasters. … Most will not suffer any long-term psychological problems, but about 13 percent will develop symptoms of post-traumatic stress, including anxiety, behavior difficulties and other problems related to the event.” The AP points out “that no one knows which treatments are best, or if certain ones work better for some children but not others.”
— “How best to treat traumatized kids? Research not clear, “Michelle Healy, USA Today, February 11, 2013.