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18 Jul 2017 dr. Rini Siallagan Articles 142

Bullying has been heard more often lately. Television, newspaper, or any other media preach about it increasing rates of bullying. Bullying happens found mostly to children, youth, or adolescents in schools or universities where they spend most their time.

CDC defines bullying as any unwanted aggressive behavior(s) by another youth or group of youths who are not siblings or current dating partners that involves an observed or perceived power imbalance and is repeated multiple times or is highly likely to be repeated. Bullying may inflict harm or distress on the targeted youth including physical, psychological, social, or educational harm.


Bullying includes aggression that can be physical in nature (hitting, tripping), verbal (name calling, teasing), or relational/ social (spreading rumors). Bullying can also occur through technology and is called electronic aggression or cyber-bullying. Electronic aggression is bullying that occurs through e-mail, a chat room, instant messaging, a website, text messaging, or videos or pictures posted on websites or sent through cell phones.
According to a research done by The U.S Department of Health and Human Services,  and The Stopbullying Organization, bullyings  leads to health problems not only for the students who are victimized, those who bully  may also experience of health problems.
Children and adolescents involved in bullying are at greater risk of physical health difficulties than those who are uninvolved.The clinical signs are: headache, nausea or vomiting, poor appetite, stomach pain, bed-wetting, and  sleep disorders.

  • Compared to uninvolved children, children who are victimized are 3 times more likely to have headaches, sleeping difficulties, stomach pains, and bed wetting, as well as 2 times as likely to have poor appetite.
  •  Children who bully are 2 times more likely to have headaches and 2.5 times more likely to have difficulties with bed wetting.
  •   Children who bully and are victimized are 6 times more likely to experience bed wetting, almost  4 times more likely to have a poor appetite, and 3 times more likely to have stomach pain.
  •   Adolescents who are victims of bullying and experience physical health difficulties are more likely than other adolescents to use medicine in excess to address these problems.
  •  Children and youth with chronic health problems such as asthma, hearing, vision or speech difficulties, epilepsy, obesity, or any other postural disorder are at greater risk of victimization, and their physical health difficulties may also be exacerbated by the victimization.
  •  Girls who have been experienced sexual harassment exhibit more physical health problems than those who had not been harassed.
  •  Greater severity or frequency of victimization is related to more severe physical health difficulties. 

Anyone can be victim and a bully.Victims are more likely those who have suffer with asthma, epilepsy, obesity or other postural disorders, autism, or those who have low self esteem. Presence of such conditions do not always mean that they will be bullied.
Early detection of a victim through clinical sign and symptoms, or through behavior change is a very important thing to do. These are the following WARNING SIGNS :
-Unexplainable injuries
  • Lost or destroyed clothing, books, electronics, or jewelry
  • Frequent headaches or stomach aches, feeling sick or faking illness
  • Changes in eating habits, like suddenly skipping meals or binge eating. Kids may come home from school hungry because they did not eat lunch.
  • Difficulty sleeping or frequent nightmares
  • Declining grades, loss of interest in schoolwork, or not wanting to go to school
  • Sudden loss of friends or avoidance of social situations
  • Feelings of helplessness or decreased self esteem
  • Self-destructive behaviors such as running away from home, harming themselves, or talking about suicide 

Bullying is a violence that must be stopped  by all  parts of society. Children and youth have the right to grow and to work in a healthy  and conducive environment to be a better next generation.  If you suspect that your child may be involved in bullying, do not hesitate to see a psychiatrist, pediatric psychiatrist or a pediatrician.