Child Neglect and Its Consequences

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This paper explores the numerous effects neglect has on a child's development. If a child lacks the necessary attachment and stimulation during the critical first years, they will have profound developmental issues throughout life. Possibly the most important aspects that are affected by neglect are the brain and a child's social development. Looking into the case of the Romanian orphans, readers will be able to see the harsh consequences. Severe neglect is child abuse that often goes unnoticed and is hard to reverse. By understanding the implications of neglect, we can intervene earlier in order to prevent severe cases from becoming irrevocable.

Keywords: neglect, attachment, development

Introduction

Neglect affects every aspect of a child's life. From not being able to form secure attachments to difficulties in developing cognitive abilities. Neglect is defined as mistreatment in which the caregiver fails to provide appropriate care. Neglect can take form in physical, educational, emotional, and medical negligence. The first few years of a child's life is a critical time in which they must receive the necessary love and stimulation in order to develop normally. If these needs are not met there can be devastating, life-long effects. Psychological neglect leads to low brain activity in the essential areas such as language and emotional perception. One of the most detrimental possible consequences is that children may develop reactive attachment disorder (RAD). RAD is characterized by the persistent lack of social responsiveness and an inability to form selective attachments (Pignotti, 2011, p.33). Once a child has lived through years of cruel neglect, it is an almost impossible task ...

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