At The Conference On Multidisciplinary Approach To Mental Health Of Children And Youth

A conference on “Mental health of children and youth-a multidisciplinary approach in promotion, prevention, diagnostics, treatment and rehabilitation” was held at the Croatian Medical Center in Zagreb on March 29th 2019, organized by the Croatian Association for Infant, Pediatric and Adolescent Psychiatry and the Croatian Institute for Public Health. The conference brought together a large number of international and Croatian specialists in the field of neuroscience, prevention, diagnostics, treatment and rehabilitation of mental disorders in children and adolescents. In the name of Child and Youth Protection Center of Zagreb were the Deputy of Director Domagoj Štimac, MD, Psychiatrist, Sub specialist of Pediatric and Adolescent Psychiatry and Psychologist Ana Raguž.

The first day of the conference, lectures were held by dr. Ivana Rosenzweig of the Sleep and Brain Plasticity Centre, King’s College (London, UK) on “Sleep and Dreams – Importance of Mental Health of Youth”, Zdravko Petanjek, prof. Ph.D from the Faculty of Medicine of the University of Zagreb, the Croatian Brain Research Institute entitled “Developmental Neuroscience – implications for the mental health of children and youth” and Albert and Leonida Mrgole from the Vezali Institute from Slovenia on “Parents’ education as a mental prevention of clinical symptoms in children and adolescents “. Furthermore, experts from the Croatian Institute for Public Health held lectures on the influence of alcohol on young people’s health, promoting health literacy in mental health improvement, the role of school medicine in the context of mental health and the screening of mental health in school age.

Prim. Domagoj Štimac held a lecture titled “Emotional abuse in high-conflict divorces – Interdisciplinary Collaboration of Experts”, which covered the findings of recent research on the effects of a high-conflict divorce on children’s mental health and the emphasis of the lecture was on the importance of recognizing emotionally abusive behaviors towards children. Also, prim. Domagoj Štimac spoke about the importance of co-operation and coordination of health, justice and social institutions in protecting the best interests of children.

Ana Raguž, mag.psych., held a lecture on “Challenges of growing up online”, which included findings from numerous recent studies as well as the results of the Center and Brave Phone’s research. In addition to the possibilities of modern technologies, there were also potential risks with emphasis on cyberbulling, sexting and sextortion, as well as the specifics of trauma in the online world and the impact of these experiences on mental health. Also, a special attention was given to the intersectoral and multidisciplinary cooperation in cases of online violence.

On the second day, a post-conference workshop titled “Emergency situations in pediatric and adolescent psychiatry” was held by experts from Psychiatric Hospital for Children and Young People. Experts have introduced participants to a review of emergency situations in pediatric and adolescent psychiatry, and emergency states like neurodevelopmental disorders (ADHD, intellectual disabilities, disorders from the autistic spectrum), aggressive behavior, anxiety and depression, suicidal behaviors and other emergency situations such as somatoform, conversive and dissociative disorders, abuse and neglect were observed.

During both days of the conference, experts actively and with interest discussed and talked about current topics and challenges related to the preventive, diagnostic and therapeutic work of experts from various sectors in the protection of children and young people.

More about conference and the program on the link:

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