In the presented scenario the main recipient of physical trauma as a result of abuse is Kolomalu. Short-term impacts of physical abuse include bruises, cuts, sprains, fractures, torn clothes, and damaged items (Boissonnault & Vanwye, 2020). The long-term impact of trauma, however, involves chronic damage and body dysregulation (Boissonnault & Vanwye, 2020). The child may have an inhibited or hyperresponsive reaction to stressful and physical stimuli, as well as recurring physical complaints, such as headaches or stomach aches (Boissonnault & Vanwye, 2020). In Kolomalu’s case, the impacts differ from one to another based on their scale and difficulty of treatment (Boissonnault & Vanwye, 2020). They are similar in that all of these conditions are generated by exposure to physical abuse.
Physical Trauma Needs
The case study presents little information about Kolomalu’s physical state at this time, mentioning only that he had been physically abused by his older brother, Eloni. A generalized view of physical trauma states that the primary needs include immediate physical treatment to remove short-term effects of trauma, the evaluation for any long-term conditions present, and the need for physical safety (Boissonnault & Vanwye, 2020). Traumatic events have to stop for healing to occur. As it stands, some of these needs are addressed, as Eloni is taken into foster care, preventing more violence against Kolomalu. The needs for long-term and short-term trauma are different in that they require different resources and time to properly heal (Boissonnault & Vanwye, 2020). They are similar in that both have a primary need for safety and an ending of violence for any healing to occur.
Impacts of Physical Trauma on Children and Family
Psychological trauma in the existing case study is present in the mother and both of her children. Kolomalu has been traumatized by his brother’s attacks on him both physically and psychologically. Eloni has several indications of psychological trauma, including substance abuse, violence towards his brother and peers, as well as the psychological effects of being evicted from his own home. The mother is experiencing severe stress because of what is happening to her children. Short-term effects of psychological trauma in this scenario include stress, anxiety, sadness, anger, confusion, and the blunted effect after the events have occurred (Starcevic, 2019). The foreseen long-term effects include the escalation of current symptoms (anxiety, violent outbreaks) coupled with the creation of trust issues, the loss of family cohesiveness, and further complications down the line (Starcevic, 2019). The differences lie in the permanence of the effects as well as the severity of the impacts, but they all stem from the same source.
Psychological Trauma Needs
Kolomalu, Eloni, and Anamalia all have a plethora of individual and family needs. Some of the common needs between the three include the feeling of belonging, safety, and the establishment of trusting relationships between each other (Starcevic, 2019). Kolomalu’s additional psychological needs include managing the existing short-term and long-term trauma caused by Eloni. The big brother’s needs include managing his substance abuse and anger issues. The mother will require assistance to learn family skills, as well as assistance with menial chores due to being hard-pressed on time (Starcevic, 2019). These needs are different in terms of scope and duration but similar in that addressing short-term trauma would help prevent long-term conditions.
Risk and Resiliency Factors
The family presents several risk factors, that might make the individuals more susceptible to physical and psychological trauma. As a family with a single mother, it makes financial and time resources scarce, as the woman has to work full-time and does not have a partner to rely on to take care of the children (Starcevic, 2019). The children being pre-teen increases the chances of violence and psychological trauma causing long-term damage. Finally, the severity of the crisis makes treatment more difficult (Starcevic, 2019). Resiliency factors include culture based around close-knit families and communities as well as the fact that Anamalia is a nurse and can administer quality aid to her children.
Boissonnault, W. G., & Vanwye, W. R. (2020). Primary care for the physical therapist: Examination and triage. Elsevier Health Sciences.
Starcevic, A. (Ed.). (2019). Psychological trauma. BoD–Books on Demand.