Bullied kids affected for life

Long-term health consequences are likely to be felt when a child is bullied at a young age. This is the suggestion of new research from the Crime Victims' Institute at Sam Houston State University, which found such victimisation can lead to both general and mental health issues in later life.

Entitled The Long-Term Health Consequences of Bullying Victimisation, the study also showed bullying might result in behavioural problems, eating disorders, alcohol use and smoking.

Leana Bouffard, director of the Crime Victims' Institute, described these after-effects as significant and substantial, adding they are much more far-reaching than immediate trauma and injury.

Ms Bouffard stated: "Understanding these long-term consequences is important to assessing the true toll of crime on its victims and on society as well as responding to victims more effectively."

She added addressing these issues might help to reduce the costs borne by the victims, the healthcare system and society in general.

Chartered Psychologist Dr Mike Eslea said: "This work adds to a growing body of evidence that bullying has serious effects on the victims in both the short and long term. What’s more, we know that some of these effects can also trigger further bullying, so that victims are caught in a vicious circle of spiralling despair. This highlights the importance of effective anti-bullying intervention at the earliest possible stage.”