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Original Research ARTICLE Provisionally accepted The full-text will be published soon. Notify me

Front. Psychiatry | doi: 10.3389/fpsyt.2018.00625

Maltreatment and emotion recognition among Brazilian adolescents

  • 1Faculty of Medicine, University of São Paulo, Brazil
  • 2Instituto de Psiquiatria, Hospital das Clínicas, Faculdade de Medicina, Universidade de São Paulo, Brazil

The experience of maltreatment can impair child development, including changes in the process of emotions recognition, which may result in impairment of social interactions and behavioral disabilities. In order to measure the association between maltreatment and changes on emotion recognition among Brazilian adolescents, the Emotional Recognition Test on Human Faces (ERTHF) was applied to a sample of 50 adolescents who had suffered different intensities and types of abuse. The social and clinical characteristics of the participants were analyzed and, from ERTHF data, the accuracy and response time for the emotion recognition. Males were 60%, with mean age of 13 years and 3 months; 60% were living in shelters. Emotion recognition changes were associated with intensity and types of maltreatment. Physical neglect (48%) was associated with changes in neutral and negative emotions recognition. Emotional neglect (48%) and emotional abuse (46%) were associated with changes in both positive and negative emotions recognition. Physical abuse (38%) was associated with changes in positive emotion recognition only. False recognition of anger was the most common outcome of maltreatment, being associated with physical neglect (p=0.015) and emotional neglect (p=0.047). Our results point out to the need to add emotional and facial recognition’s rehabilitation interventions to better attend the specific demands of maltreated children and to increase the chances of social and family reintegration.

Keywords: Child Abuse, facial expresions, emotion recognition, neglect, maltreatment

Received: 24 Jul 2018; Accepted: 05 Nov 2018.

Edited by:

Jean Marc Guile, University of Picardie Jules Verne, France

Reviewed by:

Nishant Goyal, Central Institute of Psychiatry, India
BOJAN MIRKOVIC, Hôpitaux Universitaires Pitié Salpêtrière, France  

Copyright: © 2018 Marta, Doretto and Scivoletto. This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY). The use, distribution or reproduction in other forums is permitted, provided the original author(s) and the copyright owner(s) are credited and that the original publication in this journal is cited, in accordance with accepted academic practice. No use, distribution or reproduction is permitted which does not comply with these terms.

* Correspondence: Mr. Guilherme R. Marta, Faculty of Medicine, University of São Paulo, São Paulo, Brazil,