“How childhood trauma can affect mental and physical health into adulthood” – The Conversation

childhood traumaChildhood trauma can have an impact across generations. ambrozinio/Shutterstock

Editor’s Note: May is Mental Health Awareness Month. This article is the first in a series exploring how research into adverse childhood experiences – or ACEs – is helping therapists, parents, educators and the medical community better understand the lasting effects of trauma on mental health.

“For millions of children in the U.S., poverty, neglect or abuse is a reality of everyday life, though these struggles are often hidden from view.

“Adult survivors often feel ashamed about and stigmatized for their childhood adversity. This makes it difficult to recognize that these events occur.

“While it’s easier to turn away than to face these issues, we can no longer afford to do so. Stress, mental illness and substance abuse – all health outcomes linked to childhood trauma – occur in the U.S. today at very high rates.

“In 1999, I joined the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) as an early investigator on a study to examine how childhood trauma can impact health decades later. Little did I know that I was about to begin both a professional and personal journey that would forever change my understanding of medicine, public health and the human capacity to heal.

“That seminal study provided insight into the lifelong health consequences of adverse childhood experiences (ACEs).

Read this article at The Conversation in its entirety, click here.

 

 

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