Traumatic Stress

Children and adolescents’ cognitive, social and emotional development blossom when they are safe, nurturing environments. Learning to respond to stress is a normal part of human development. The primary care team has longitudinal relationships with children and their families. The pediatric medical home can assist children and families who have had traumatic experiences by recognizing trauma symptoms, assess its impact on the family’s functioning and provide interventions to help the family cope and heal.

This module focuses on understanding the different ways that trauma can manifest and how to identify problematic symptoms and coping patterns. The effects of trauma for patients and their families can be complex but can be effectively managed with early identification and intervention using evidence informed treatments.

CEs/CMEs are available for this training.

Learning Objectives

After completing this training, you will be able to:

  • Describe the impact of toxic stress on brain development
  • Provide at least 3 examples of common adverse childhood experiences (ACES)
  • Explain the etiology of trauma
  • Identify factors that influence a child’s response to trauma
  • List the 4 major symptoms clusters associated with post-traumatic symptoms.
  • Distinguish between the presentation of trauma in early childhood versus school-aged children and adolescents

Course Information

Estimated Time: 1 hour


Course Instructors

  • Alexander Chang headshotAlexander Chang
  • Michelle P. Durham headshotMichelle P. Durham
    MD, MPH


1 year of access
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