Mental Health Among Children Older than 10 Years Exposed to the Haiti 2010 Earthquake: a Critical Review

Judite Blanc, Dominique Eugene, Elizabeth Farrah Louis, Jeff Matherson Cadichon, Jolette Joseph, Anderson Pierre, Roudly Laine, Margarett Alexandre, Keng Yen Huang

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

Abstract

Purpose of Review: There is evidence that the exposure to a major natural disaster such as the 2010 earthquake in Haiti may have devastating short- and long-term effects on children’s mental health and overall development. This review summarizes what has been reported in the past 3 years (2017–2020) regarding emotional, psychological, and behavioral effects of exposure to this particular earthquake on children 10 years and older. Recent Findings: Twenty-six articles were screened, of which twenty-one were selected for final analysis. The main themes addressed in the literature over the 3 years concerned prevalence of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), depression, determinants of resilience factors, prevalence of sexual violence as well as prenatal exposure, and subsequent autism behaviors/symptoms. Summary: The majority of the findings analyzed in this review on mental health in young Haitian survivors of the 2010 earthquake came from cross-sectional studies conducted in West region of Haiti, spefically Port-au-Prince. There was a paucity of longitudinal and translational data available. The results of this critical review can be used to inform disaster preparedness programs with the aim of protecting children’s development and mental health, which are much needed on this disaster-prone island.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number57
JournalCurrent Psychiatry Reports
Volume22
Issue number11
DOIs
StatePublished - Nov 1 2020

Keywords

  • Behavioral impairments
  • Children
  • Emotional
  • Haiti 2010 earthquake
  • Psychological

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Psychiatry and Mental health

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