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A 29-year-old member asked:

How does grief from a death in the family affect a child's social development?

2 doctor answers7 doctors weighed in
Dr. Glen Elliott
Child Psychiatry 44 years experience
Lots of variables: Your excellent question is hard to answer, because it depends on who died, age of child, effect on rest of family, and many other variables. Research shows that children who lose their mother before age 11 are at increased risk of depression as adults, but there are many possible explanations. Broadly, helping children grieve in age-appropriate ways is best way to minimize lasting impairment.
Dr. Johanna Fricke
Pediatrics - Developmental and Behavioral 51 years experience
Age-dependent: A young child mirrors the reactions of the family. Keep routines as normal as possible. Children understand the finality of death around age 10. Withdrawal, loss of interest in usual activities and friends, changes in eating/sleeping and irritability are signs of depression. Seek help from a child psychologist if concerned.

Similar questions

A 39-year-old member asked:

How can grief of a death influences a child's social development?

2 doctor answers3 doctors weighed in
Dr. David Sherer
Anesthesiology 38 years experience
Yes: Depending on circumstances (who died, what age, etc) counseling of child can be very helpful.
Last updated Jan 3, 2014

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