AECF: Not enough is being done to help children overcome "toxic stress"

AECF: Not enough is being done to help children overcome "toxic stress" (WKRC)

CINCINNATI (WKRC) - There is so much more to be done in addressing childhood trauma and toxic stress.

That's the conclusion reached from new research that was recently released from the Annie E. Casey Foundation.

Maria Piombo of Central Clinic Behavior Health said that 80 percent of the kids they see have had “toxic stress” and instead of being helped, they simply get labeled as “bad kids.”

“A lot of our children might have experienced physical abuse, sexual abuse or neglect, they may live in violent neighborhoods, they may have witnessed domestic violence,” said Piombo. “This isn't a bad kid, and it's not ‘what's wrong with you,’ but it's ‘what happened to you,’ if we are able to ask those types of questions then that helps us understand where this child is coming from.”

According to the new research, some of the outcomes of us not doing enough to help children overcome all this has serious consequences.

Indiana has the nation’s greatest percentage increase in the number of children being placed in foster care, Ohio ranked 24th in the country and Kentucky ranked 30th,

Child and family service organizations have also reported that a lot of this may have to do with parental abuse and neglect.

More than half the resulting in removal of the kids had to do with parental substance abuse.

The authors of the study say community and school programs are a good way to start supporting these kids, but just recognizing the hardships is an important step in individualizing treatment and helping kids become productive adults when they grow up.

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