Behavioral Responses in Youth Exposed to Natural Disasters and Political Conflict

Orit Nuttman-Shwartz

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

14 Scopus citations


Purpose of Review: The aim of this review was to focus solely on youths’ behavioral responses to natural disasters and political conflicts in order to fully understand their impact and scope. Recent Findings: Recent studies in the field of trauma have shown that theoretical conceptions have moved away from a narrow focus on the individual and towards wider ecological perspectives and from a narrow focus on negative responses to trauma exposure towards positive prosocial responses. Although there is a distinction between youths’ behavioral responses towards natural disasters vs. towards political conflicts, in both of these adverse situations, behavioral responses exist alongside emotional responses. Summary: Adolescents exposed to either type of adverse scenario are often able to turn their negative experiences into positive ones, take greater responsibility for themselves and others, contribute to recovery processes, and engage in prosocial behaviors. These responses must be investigated in the context of the trauma field’s recent understandings regarding psychological, biological, environmental, and cultural factors.

Original languageEnglish
Article number42
JournalCurrent Psychiatry Reports
Issue number6
StatePublished - 1 Jun 2019
Externally publishedYes


  • Adolescents
  • Behavioral responses
  • Conduct problems
  • Natural disasters
  • Political conflict
  • Youth

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Psychiatry and Mental health

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