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Childhood Abuse and PTSD Cause for Concern in Bexar County

San Antonio Children's Shelter

Post Traumatic Stress Disorder can affect kids as well as adults, and often occurs in children who have been abused or neglected; the San Antonio Children's Shelter is co-hosting a special town hall conference on Childhood PTSD and Depression this week.

Bexar County sits near the top of the list of child abuse rates in Texas, which means thousands of our community's children who have been abused, abandoned or neglected are not getting treatment. Annette Rodriguez, President of the San Antonio Children's Shelter, said helping kids get treatment for PTSD and depression should be a priority for the community.

"It could be like depression. It could be PTSD, panic and anxiety disorder. For adolescents, it could turn into juvenile delinquent behavior. We know that children who've been abused are six times more likely to commit suicide," Rodriguez said.

Abused children are  also more likely to abuse their own children, and girls are more likely to become teen mothers. Rodriguez said that the Children's Shelter supports the mayor's pre-K initiative.

"Anytime that a child is able to interact in a social setting with other adults, especially when the child comes from an at-risk area, it's good to have a trained caregiver looking at a child and being able to raise those red flags should it be needed," said Rodriguez.

Several experts will address assessment and treatment of childhood PTSD  at the town hall Thursday and Friday. The public is invited.

More information is available online at: www.childrensshelter.org