Use of Residential Care in Europe for Children Aged Under Three: Some Lessons from Neurobiology

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Bilson, Andrew (2009)

This critical commentary reviews the research into the use of residential care for children aged under three years and looks at some of the explanations that can be found for this in neurobiology. There continue to be high numbers and rates of these vulnerable children in institutions not only in the former Soviet states, but also in Western Europe. The new research provides strong evidence on the negative consequences for these children, particularly for those who remain in institutional care beyond the age of six months. Explanations from neurobiology sit well beside understandings drawn from attachment theory and start to show the mechanisms for this and also the ability of the brain to compensate.
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