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Childhood Trauma Treatment

Traumatic events during childhood can affect a person for the rest of his or her life, and often lead to problems with drug and alcohol abuse.

What is Childhood Trauma?

Childhood trauma refers to any traumatic event that occurs before the age of six and that negatively impacts a child’s sense of safety. Some examples include:

  • Physical, emotional, or sexual abuse
  • Neglect
  • Witnessing a violent act, such as a robbery, murder, or rape
  • Natural disasters

Signs of Childhood Trauma

Although very young children are unable to verbally express that they have experienced trauma, there are nonetheless some telltale signs that might let a parent know that something out of the ordinary has happened:

  • Regressive behavior, for example, wetting or soiling themselves after being potty trained
  • Acting out in social situations
  • Excessive screaming or crying
  • Separation anxiety
  • Poor appetite

Changes in Behavior

Parents often believe that very young children are “too little to understand” what is going on around them. They may use a child’s age as a reason to avoid talking about a particular event. The problem with this line of thinking is that issues do not simply go away on their own. They may manifest themselves months or years later, even once a person reaches adulthood.

Adult survivors of childhood trauma may experience negative emotions, yet not be able to determine why they are feeling like they do. This can lead to an increased risk of abusing drugs or alcohol. The National Institute on Drug Abuse reports that two-thirds of all patients seeking treatment for drug abuse claim to have been physically, emotionally, or sexually abused during their childhood.

Physical and Mental Symptoms of Childhood Trauma

Those who have unresolved childhood trauma may:

  • Find it hard to establish trust
  • Blame themselves for the traumatic event
  • Have a lack of self-esteem
  • Experience nightmares or sleep disorders
  • Become easily agitated
  • Have unexplained stomach aches or headaches

How North Coast Recovery Can Help

North Coast Recovery is an outpatient treatment rehab center in the Pacific Northwest serving the Portland Metro Area, Hillsboro, Beaverton and surrounding areas in Oregon as well as Seattle, Tacoma, Vancouver and the I-5 corridor in Washington and Oregon. Contact us for more information and to learn how North Coast Recovery can help you or a family member.

North Coast Recovery, a place of healing…a place of hope.