Posttraumatic symptoms and posttraumatic growth among Israeli youth exposed to terror incidents

Avital Laufer*, Zahava Solomon

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


This study assessed the pathogenic and salutogenic effects of exposure to terror among Israeli youth. A total of 2,949 adolescents from grades seven through nine in four areas of differing exposure to terror were assessed for objective exposure and subjective exposure to terror, and for posttraumatic symptoms and posttraumatic growth. Two-thirds of the subjects faced at least one terror incident, and one-fourth were exposed to more than three different terror incidents. We found a low correlation between objective and subjective exposure. Results show that 41.1% of the participants report mild to severe posttraumatic symptoms, while 74.4% report feelings of growth. Objective and subjective measures of exposure were associated with both posttraumatic stress and psychological growth. Additionally, religious adolescents reported greater feelings of growth, and girls reported more feelings of growth than boys. The pathogenic and salutogenic effects of terror are discussed.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)429-447
Number of pages19
JournalJournal of Social and Clinical Psychology
Issue number4
StatePublished - Apr 2006


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