Attacks in Gaza Affect Children’s Mental Health

Little girl on Gaza’s rubble Little girl on Gaza’s rubble Photo by Mohammed Ibrahim

Israeli’s attacks in Gaza highly impact on Children’s Mental Health

The psychological collateral effects of the continuous attacks in Gaza are affecting more and more the Children's Mental Health in the area.
Since the first days of the war, about 300 families have sought shelter in Al-Aqsa Martyrs Hospital. Numbers have steadily increased. According to Al-Jazeera, doctors continuously report the stories of many children traumatized by what they witnessed putting the emphasis on how strong the impact of their relatives’ death on their Mental Health is.
The hospital’s mental health unit has made a special commitment to support these children.
Many of them have relatives who are wounded or deceased or have been displaced and are now taking shelter in the hospital, all of which have taken a significant toll on their psychological well being. 
As reported by Al-Jazeera, many of the children show symptoms such as abdominal pain, headaches, foot pain, involuntary urination, and rapid heartbeats as a direct consequence of the bombing in the Strip. 

According to UNICEF, before the previous conflict in 2021, one in three children in Gaza needed care for conflict-related trauma. 
In a study in 2022, the no-profit Save the Children interviewed nearly 500 children and 160 parents in Gaza. It found that 80% of children in the study showed symptoms of emotional distress. About half of them there reported having contemplated suicide, and three out of five kids were self-harming. Four in five children reported they were living with depression, grief, and fear.

Considering that these data are the latest available (there is no up-to-date data due to the recent outbreak of new conflicts as of October 2023), it is likely that the numbers have increased and the general conditions regarding the mental health of Gaza's children are set to worsen.

 

To read more, visit:

https://www.aljazeera.com/news/2023/11/20/no-end-in-sight-gazas-traumatised-children-need-psychological-aid 

https://www.npr.org/sections/goatsandsoda/2023/11/10/1211672951/israel-hamas-war-mental-health-gaza-children#:~:text=In%20a%20study%20in%202022,five%20kids%20were%20self%2Dharming

https://resourcecentre.savethechildren.net/pdf/gaza_blockade_mental_health_palestinian_children_2022.pdf

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