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Eur Psychiatry. 2005 Mar;20(2):152-7.

Effects of internal displacement and resettlement on the mental health of Turkish children and adolescents.

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  • 1Child Psychiatry Department Cebeci, School of Medicine, Ankara University, 06100 Ankara, Turkey.



To evaluate the effects of internal displacement and resettlement within Turkey on the emotional and behavioral profile of children, age 5-18 after controlling for possible confounding and demographic variables.


We conducted a national population survey using a self-weighted, equal probability sample. We compared the CBCL, TRF and YSR responses regarding children with (n = 1644) and without (n = 1855) experience of internal displacement. We examined the effects of gender, age, paternal employment, resettlement, urban residence and physical illness.


The children and adolescents with internal displacement had significantly higher internalizing, externalizing and total problem scores on the CBCL and YSR, and higher internalizing scores on the TRF. The effect of displacement was related to higher internalizing problems when factors like physical illness, child age, child gender and urban residence were accounted. The overall effect was small explaining only 0.1-1.5% of the total variance by parent reports, and not evident by teacher reports.


To our knowledge the present study is the first to examine Turkish children and adolescents with and without experience of internal displacement. The results are consistent with previous immigration studies: child age, gender, presence of physical illness and urban residence were more important predictors of internalization and externalization problem scores irrespective of informant source.

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