What Child Abuse Does to The Brain

Child abuse is just as prevalent as it ever was, but now that the psychological effects of abuse are being studied in more depth, we are gaining more understanding about the effects of abuse on a person’s life, both as a child and an adult. Child abuse can lead to an adult who practices the same behaviors he/she was taught (which can damage their relationships), but it can also physically harm the victim’s brain.

According to an article on Live Science by Jennifer Welsh, the part of your brain that deals with memory (the hippocampus) can be damaged during childhood abuse, neglect, and/or maltreatment. The damage seems to occur when exposed to high levels of stress during certain ages. With that damage comes a lower ability to “talk” to other areas of the brain, like the brain’s reward center (dopamine system). In the article, a researcher from Harvard University suggested that this may be why many victims of abuse are at greater risk for depression, drug abuse and mental illness in adulthood.

Read the entire article at Live Science.

These findings are extremely important for telling how the brain reacts to its surroundings – if a child is especially vulnerable to stress-based damage in his/her early years, learning how to interact and deal with conflict in a healthy way can protect your children. If your child is often exposed to loud, explosive fights or is humiliated or embarrassed by punishment techniques, what could the effects be later on in life? This is not to say we’re all turning our children into drug addicts later on – but new research consistently shows us that our brains are always watching and making note of our lives.

Dr. Nora

Dr. Nora

Dr. Nora is a well known coach, conflict solver and trainer, and CEO of Creative Conflict Resolutions, Inc. Sign up for free, here on her blog, to be connected to her innovative conflict solutions, positive suggestions and life-changing coaching sessions, along with blog updates, news, and more! We can begin by you having a complimentary consultation with Dr. Nora. Visit her coaching site today to talk with Dr. Nora and receive a plan for action to change your life. She’s ready to help!

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