- Children face most severe levels of victimization from the beginning of their schooling.
- These kids develop significant symptoms of suicidal behaviour and anxiety.
- Even after the victimization ends, it affects still pertains.
A study found that children who face bullying can be at a risk of developing mental health issues, suicidal thoughts and anxiety in their years. For the study, the team looked at 1,363 children who were followed until the age of 15 years.
About 59 percent of participants had experienced some peer victimisation in the first years of elementary school, although it generally declined as the children grew older.
“Our findings showed a general tendency, in about 15 percent of the children, of being exposed to the most severe levels of victimisation from the beginning of their education until the transition to high school,” said Marie-Claude Geoffroy, from the McGill University in Canada.
- Children who experienced severe peer victimisation were more than twice as likely to report depression or low moods at age 15, and three times more likely to report anxiety.
- This group of children were also 3.5 times more likely to report serious suicidal thoughts or attempt suicide.
“Those children were at greater risk of debilitating depressive/dysthymic symptoms or anxiety and of suicidality in adolescence than less severely victimised children, even after we accounted for a plethora of confounders assessed throughout childhood,” Geoffroy added.
“Although peer victimisation starts to decrease by the end of childhood, individuals in the severe trajectory group were still being exposed to the highest level of victimisation in early adolescence,” Geoffroy noted.
Severe peer victimisation may contribute to the development of mental health problems in adolescence, thus, it is important to prevent victimisation early in the lifespan, the results suggest.
The study was published in journal CMAJ. (IANS)Click here for reuse options!
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