The Role of Parents, Parenting and the Family Environment in Children’s Post-Disaster Mental Health
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There is widespread support for the hypothesis that, post-disaster, children’s mental health is impacted—at least in part—via the impact on parents, parenting, parent-child interactions, and the family environment. To some degree, the enthusiasm with which this hypothesis is held outstrips the evidence examining it. The current paper critically evaluates the empirical evidence for this hypothesis and concludes that although limited (both in terms of number of existing studies and methodological flaws), the extant literature indicates some parent-related variables, as well as some aspects of the family environment are likely to constitute risk or protective factors for children. Given that parenting is modifiable, it is proposed that the identified parent- and family-related factors represent important therapeutic targets, and a universal post-disaster parenting intervention (Disaster Recovery Triple P) is described.
KeywordsDisaster Children Parenting Family environment Mental health
Compliance with Ethical Standards
Conflict of Interest
Vanessa E. Cobham and Brett McDermott, as program authors, receive royalties from Triple P International Pty Ltd from dissemination of Disaster Recovery Triple P.
Divna Haslam is a paid training consultant to Triple P International, who is licensed by the University of Queensland to disseminate Triple P worldwide. Triple P International pays a research fee to UQ to support ongoing research and development activities in the Parenting and Family Support Centre. Dr. Haslam has copyright on Workplace Triple P with royalties paid to Triple P International Pty Ltd.
Matthew R. Sanders is a paid consultant to Triple P International, who is licensed by the University of Queensland to disseminate Triple P worldwide. Triple P International pays a research fee to UQ to support ongoing research and development activities in the Parenting and Family Support Centre. Disaster Recovery Triple P is owned by the University of Queensland. UQ’s main technology transfer company UniQuest has licensed Triple P International to disseminate the program worldwide. Royalties are paid to the Faculty of Health and Behavioural Sciences, the Parenting and Family Support Centre in the School of Psychology, and contributory authors. Dr. Sanders is a contributory author and a consultant to Triple P International.
Human and Animal Rights and Informed Consent
This article does not contain any studies with human or animal subjects performed by any of the authors.
Papers of particular interest, published recently, have been highlighted as: • Of importance
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