24-Hour Crisis Hotline: (877)SAFEGBC or (877)723-3422 Mental Health & Substance Abuse Issues

6502 Nursery Drive, Suite 100
Victoria, TX 77904
(361)575-0611
(800)421-8825

Child & Adolescent Development: Overview
Resources
Basic InformationMore InformationLatest News
Health Tip: Giving Cough Medicine to a ChildHealthy Sleep Habits for Kids Pay Off'Experience to Share': Facebook Page Helps Families Hit by Polio-Like IllnessFamily, School Support May Help Stop Bullies in Their TracksInfections in the Young May Be Tied to Risk for Mental Illness: StudyDoctors More Cautious Now When Prescribing Opioids to KidsMany Cases of Polio-Like Illness in Kids May Be MisdiagnosedSecondhand Pot Smoke Can Harm an Asthmatic ChildObesity Boosts Childhood Asthma Risk by 30 PercentAsk About the Antibiotics Prescribed for Your ChildProbiotics Show No Effect on Kids' Tummy UpsetsWhat Are This Year's Most Dangerous Toys?Secondhand Pot Smoke Found in Kids' LungsNearly 1 in 12 U.S. Kids Has a Food AllergyKids Get Caught in Deadly Cross-Fire of Domestic ViolenceTwo Factors at Birth Can Boost a Child's Obesity RiskCDC Probe Continues as Cases of Polio-Like Illness Rise in KidsHealth Tip: Limit Fat, Sugar and Salt in Your Child's DietSome Activity Fine for Kids Recovering From Concussions, Docs SayDead End for Treatment of Polio-Like Disorder Striking KidsAHA: Traumatic Childhood Could Increase Heart Disease Risk in AdulthoodSmartphones, Summer Birth Could Raise Kids' Odds for NearsightednessHealth Tip: If Your Child Develops a FeverPediatricians Renew Call to Abandon SpankingSleep May Speed Kids' Recovery From ConcussionSharp Rise Seen in Kids' ER Visits for Mental Health WoesInjured Parent Can Mean Sleepless Nights for KidsObesity May Harm Kids' Academics, Coping SkillsInstant-Soup Burns Send Almost 10,000 Kids to ERs Each YearHealth Tip: A Pediatrician's Role in Special EducationCommon Chemical Tied to Language Delay in KidsIn California, Some Doctors Sell 'Medical Exemptions' for Kids' VaccinationsGetting Flu Shot Annually Won't Undermine Its Effectiveness in KidsSmoke Alarm With Mom's Voice Wakes Children FasterDon't Blame Just Air Pollution for Asthma in KidsObesity a Painful Reality for 1 in 6 U.S. YouthsAHA: Heart Health's Impact on Brain May Begin in ChildhoodDisabling Hip Ailment Is Another Health Risk for Obese KidsTry Small 'Bites' to Get Kids to ExerciseCDC Warns of Polio-Like Virus Striking More U.S. KidsCountries That Ban Spanking See Less Teen Violence: StudyHealth Tip: Know the Risks of Chicken PoxKids' Concussion Symptoms May Persist for a YearAdd Asthma to List of Possible Causes of Childhood ObesityHealth Tip: Teach Your Kids ToleranceHealth Tip: Treat Your Child's AllergiesMore Evidence Video Games May Trigger Aggression in KidsDeath Rates for Young Americans Drop, But Still Too HighJust Witnessing School Violence Can Leave Psychic ScarsGrowing Up Poor May Permanently Damage Thinking Skills
Questions and AnswersLinks
Related Topics

ADHD: Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder
Childhood Mental Disorders and Illnesses
Child Development & Parenting: Infants (0-2)
Child Development & Parenting: Early (3-7)

Just Witnessing School Violence Can Leave Psychic Scars

HealthDay News
by -- Mary Elizabeth Dallas
Updated: Sep 28th 2018

new article illustration

FRIDAY, Sept. 28, 2018 (HealthDay News) -- For middle school students, witnessing school violence can be as bad as being bullied, new research suggests.

An international team of researchers found that young witnesses face many of the same challenges later on as those who are direct victims of campus violence. Notably, eighth-grade witnesses are at higher risk for social and academic problems by the time they're high school sophomores.

"It is clear that approaches to prevention and intervention should include witnesses as well victims and perpetrators and target all forms of school violence," said study leader Michel Janosz. He's director of the School of Psycho-Education at the University of Montreal.

Janosz said supportive family and community relationships help young people cope after they're exposed to these traumatic events. "These also prevent emotional desensitization to violence which also contributes to aggressive behavior in youth," he said in a university news release.

The study involved nearly 4,000 students in Quebec. The researchers wanted to know how witnessing violence at age 13 affected their social and academic behavior. The study looked at students' use of drugs, delinquency and school performance, as well as their emotional well-being two years later.

The researchers also compared the long-term effects of witnessing violence with those experiencing violence directly.

The study, published recently in the Journal of Epidemiology and Community Health, found most students had observed violence at school.

Those who had seen physical assaults or someone carrying weapons in the eighth grade had a higher risk of drug use and delinquency later on, the study found. The same was also true for those who had witnessed thefts and vandalism, which the researchers described as hidden or veiled violence.

In addition, exposure to less serious acts such as threats and insults was associated with increased drug use, social anxiety, symptoms of depression and less involvement at school, the researchers noted. But only an association rather than a cause-and-effect link was observed.

Study co-author Linda Pagani is also a professor at the School of Psycho-Education. "There were several take-home messages. First, witnessing school violence in Grade 8 predicted later impairment at Grade 10. Second, bystander effects were very similar to being victimized by violence directly," she said in the news release.

The research team said post-violence interventions should encourage concern for others and intolerance for disrespect.

"Nobody should feel powerless," Janosz said. "Schools should seek to empower bystander students who are not directly involved in acts of school violence, rather than giving them messages to stay uninvolved."

More information

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention provides more information on school violence.