There are many influences on children’s development. We know that some things about children’s lives put them at ‘higher risk’ of poor outcomes. Other things in their lives increase the chance of positive outcomes. Research from many different disciplines adds to our understanding of these factors (e.g. neuroscience, psychology, infant mental health).
There is ever-increasing research regarding the potentially lasting impact of a child’s early experiences. While evidence-based knowledge is an excellent thing, single studies, or even bodies of research on a particular topic, can ever only tell part of the complex story of infant and child development.1 With apologies to Alexander Pope, a little research can be a dangerous thing, especially when
The brain is responsible for so much. It’s involved when we breathe and when we digest our food. It helps us to move and to keep our balance. It creates our emotions, our behaviour, allows us to love, and to laugh. It promotes our survival. It is responsible for dreams, and it monitors our body to see whether we need a drink. And much much more.
While many people can use cannabis and not seem to suffer ill-effects directly, the younger, the longer, and the more often people use cannabis, the more likely they are to suffer from a range of harms later in life. It may not be at all clear to them, or others, that their use of cannabis has contributed to their difficulties.
Resilience is the ability to develop well even during hard times. Despite what some people think, resilience isn’t something that ‘just happens’, or something some children have while others don’t. Resilience comes about through experiences.