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How Childhood Trauma Effects The Brain

It is not news that people abused as children are more exposed to clinical depression, anxiety, and a higher risk of death from suicide. But now, researchers have begun to reveal what happens in the brain following this kind of trauma.


New research is now revealing what happens to the brain in the aftermath of early-life abuse.


According to data provided by the Children's Bureau of the United States Department of Health and Human Services, there was a 3.8 percent increase in reported child abuse cases in the country between 2011 and 2015. This amounts to 683,000 cases of child abuse in 2015 alone in the U.S.

Research suggests that this type of trauma in childhood leaves deep marks, giving rise to issues including post-traumatic stress disorder, depression, anxiety, and substance abuse.

Now, a team from the McGill Group for Suicide Studies at the Douglas Mental Health University Institute and McGill University in Montreal, Canada, aims to decipher how a history of abuse can impact key brain mechanisms, affecting

mental health.

Dr. Pierre-Eric Lutz and colleagues noted that in adults who went through severe abuse as children, the neural connections in an area of the brain associated with the regulation of emotion, attention, and various other cognitive processes are critically impaired.

The researchers' findings were published recently in The American Journal of Psychiatry.


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