Effect of deployment on kids

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Effect of deployment on kids

Children of all ages are affected by deployments. Even infants are affected by deployments. And it usually comes out in regulation, so it could be in infants it might be in regulation with eating or sleeping or toileting. With toddlers, the regulation affects usually come in the form of regression, so they might have previously been potty trained, but now all of a sudden they are having accidents. Or they might have previously learned to sleep in their own beds, but suddenly they want to be closer to their parents. And that's normal for kids of that age, when they are going through a transition like having a parent deployed. For school aged kids, it usually occurs through anxiety and they usually express it symptomatically in their bodies. So every elementary school nurse will tell you they know when a deployment has hit, because they all of a sudden have kids in the nurses office with stomach aches and headaches, and that's just how they tend to express their anxiety and tension. With adolescents, you will see maybe some shifts in behavior during a deployment or during a reintegration - any of the major transition points, because they are having to get used to new roles and responsibilities. Maybe they're driving car pool for their younger siblings, or maybe their service-member parent is back home and doesn't want them to be driving carpool for their younger siblings. So both of these can create stress in adolescents. And oftentimes we see it in acting out behaviors, so like risk taking behaviors. There might be some experimentation with alcohol or drugs and thing like that, that parents should just look out for. Keep an eye on and make sure that it's not going anywhere beyond that.
ALL PARENTS, Family Life

Watch Catherine Mogil, PsyD's video on Effect of deployment on kids...


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Catherine Mogil, PsyD

Family Trauma Therapist

Dr. Catherine E. Mogil is an assistant clinical professor at the Semel Institute for Neuroscience and Human Behavior in the David Geffen School of Medicine at the University of California, Los Angeles. She is a licensed clinical psychologist and serves as the director of training and intervention development for the Nathanson Family Resilience Center and as the co-director of the Child and Family Trauma Service.

Dr. Mogil is also a consultant for the National Military Family Association's Operation Purple Family Retreats, the Uniformed Services University, and a special military project with the Los Angeles County Department of Mental Health. Her recent research focuses on the effects of multiple deployments on military families, including the role of parental functioning on childhood mental health. Working with children of all developmental stages, Dr. Mogil has been involved in several intervention development and translational research projects that examine the efficacy of parent-assisted interventions for infants and toddlers in foster care, school-aged children with developmental disabilities, and adolescents with autism spectrum and other disorders.

Dr. Mogil is certified in parent-child interaction therapy, trauma-focused cognitive behavioral therapy, and leadership education in neurodevelopmental disabilities. She received her doctorate from Pepperdine University and completed her clinical internship at UCLA. Dr. Mogil also completed a postdoctoral fellowship specializing in the prevention and treatment of child and family traumatic stress at the University of Southern California and Children's Hospital Los Angeles.

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