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Trauma »
Effects of Trauma on Health

Effects of Trauma on Brain Development and Brain Regulation

Trauma …

  • prior to 25 years of age disrupts neurodevelopment
  • causes the hippocampus to shrink which affects memory, and fosters intrusive memories and other PTSD symptoms
  • dysregulates the stress response towards constant fight flight and suppressed immunity
  • increases impairment of judgement as adults, incl. impulsivity and aggression
  • dysregulates the endorphin system which creates vulnerability toward addiction
  • compromised ability to integrate rational thought and emotion
  • dysregulates serotonin and norepinephrine release which leads to depression and anxiety

Effects of Trauma on Behavior

Trauma …

  • increases self-harm behaviors in adolescents (13-25%)
  • is related to 54% of depression in women
  • is associated with 2/3 of suicide attempts
  • is responsible for a 3 times increased likelihood of attempted suicide in women
  • is predictive in chronic pain sufferers
  • opens the door to addiction, since it impairs self-soothing, increases impulsivity, and dysregulates endorphins.  Addictive substances go the same receptor sites as endorphins