Dissociative Experiences and Trauma Exposure Among Newly Arrived and Settled Young War Refugees

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


War-traumatized refugee adolescents are a vulnerable and understudied group. This study of two different groups of war-traumatized youth (N = 77) resettled in Sweden (newly arrived refugee adolescents, n = 42, 13–19 years, and settled students with childhood war experiences, n = 35, 11–18 years) evaluated their war experiences, refugee journey, general trauma exposure, posttraumatic stress symptoms, and dissociative experiences. Both groups had experienced many traumas and a substantial proportion reported levels consistent with posttraumatic stress (71% in the newly arrived group and 34% among the settled students) and dissociation (36% and 23%, respectively). The study also provides information about the type of adverse events experienced by war-refugee adolescents, including their own subjective appraisals of the worst events. The results show that the extent of trauma exposure and posttraumatic and dissociative symptomatology among refugee adolescents are considerable even after a period of resettlement, a finding that has educational, clinical, and social implications.


External organisations
  • Karolinska Institutet
Research areas and keywords

Subject classification (UKÄ) – MANDATORY

  • Applied Psychology


  • Adolescents, dissociation, posttraumatic stress, refugee, war
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1132-1149
Number of pages18
JournalJournal of Aggression, Maltreatment and Trauma
Issue number10
Early online date2017 Sep 15
Publication statusPublished - 2017
Publication categoryResearch