Sensitivity is another term for susceptibility. Individuals who are highly sensitive are more susceptible to the effects of their environment, for better and for worse. When it comes to highly sensitive children, the environment with the greatest impact - good or bad - is the parent-child relationship.
The parenting environment matters to *all* children. Children develop within the context of the parent-child relationship. What’s important to be aware of is that highly sensitive children- one in every five children- have a *heightened susceptibility* to the parenting environment and the parent-child relationship at the core of that environment.
Key researchers in the fields of child development and differential susceptibility have argued that parents and caregivers have even greater influence in shaping the developmental trajectory and mental health outcomes of highly sensitive children.
It is incredibly important that health professionals, teachers, parents, and families learn to identify highly sensitive (susceptible) children as early as possible so that supports can be put in place around the child and family in all contexts in order to promote optimal developmental outcomes for these children.
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