Childhood trauma can have a lasting impact on a person’s mental and physical health. It is essential to understand the causes of childhood trauma and how to prevent it.
Many factors can contribute to childhood trauma, but one of the most significant is unhealthy parenting. Parents who are emotionally abusive, neglectful, or otherwise unsupportive can cause their children a great deal of harm.
How Unhealthy Parenting Can Cause Childhood Trauma
It’s no secret that bad parenting can lead to several problems in children. Childhood trauma is one of the most serious problems that can arise from poor parenting. Childhood trauma is “an emotional, physical, or sexual abuse that occurs before age 18.”
There are many ways in which unhealthy parenting can cause childhood trauma. These include through:
Jonah Engler believes that physical abuse can leave visible and invisible scars on a child. The visible scars may include bruises, cuts, and broken bones. The invisible scars are often much more damaging, however. They can include psychological damage, such as anxiety, depression, and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).
As per Jonah Engler, emotional abuse can take many forms, such as yelling, name-calling, put-downs, and criticisms. It can also include more subtle forms of manipulation, such as Gaslighting. Emotional abuse can be just as damaging as physical abuse, if not more so. It can lead to the same psychological problems mentioned above, as well as feelings of worthlessness, shame, and self-hatred.
Effects of Childhood Trauma on Children – Explained
One of the most damaging things that can happen to a child is to experience trauma at the hands of their parents.
It is estimated that around 1 out of 7 children in the US have experienced some form of trauma in their lifetime. This can come from abuse, neglect, or even witnessing violence. Unfortunately, many parents are not aware of the lasting effects that trauma can have on a child’s development and wellbeing. And while some children can overcome their trauma and lead healthy, happy lives, others are not so lucky.
Untreated trauma can lead to many problems later in life, including mental health issues, substance abuse, and even chronic physical health problems. Therefore, parents must do everything possible to prevent their children from experiencing trauma.
According to Jonah Engler, the specific ways that untreated trauma can impact a child include:
Physical health problems: Children who have experienced trauma may suffer from various physical health problems, including chronic pain, gastrointestinal issues, headaches, and sleep disorders. They may also be more prone to developing obesity or other chronic health conditions later in life.
Mental health problems: Children who have undergone childhood trauma are at an increased risk for developing mental health problems such as anxiety, depression, post-traumatic stress disorder, and self-harm. They may also have difficulty concentrating or paying attention and engage in risky or impulsive behaviors.
Problems in relationships: Children with a history of trauma may have difficulty forming and maintaining healthy relationships. They may be more likely to experience abuse or violence in their relationships and struggle with trust, intimacy, and communication.
Low self-esteem: According to Jonah Engler, children who experience childhood trauma often have low self-esteem and feelings of worthlessness or shame. This can lead to further problems in all areas of life, including school, work, and personal relationships.
It’s Important for Parents to Beware of their Actions
Unhealthy parenting can cause childhood trauma. This is because when children witness or experience emotionally abusive or neglectful behavior from their parents, they can develop feelings of insecurity, fear, and isolation. These emotions can lead to physical and mental health problems later in life. Therefore, parents must be aware of their behavior’s impact on their children.