This book review written for Health Affairs summarizes key points from Nadine Burke Harris, MD’s The Deepest Well: Healing the Long-Term Effects of Childhood Adversity. The review summarizes the startling effects of regularly experiencing traumatic events as a child, which can lead to chronic dysregulation of the body’s stress response system, and can even affect the architecture of the brain. For example, when the brain’s amygdala (associated with the fight-or-flight response) is repeatedly triggered, it becomes overactive and enlarged, while the hippocampus (associated with memory and learning) shrinks. The review also touches on the screening approach Dr. Burke Harris recommends using with patients, and the six things she prescribes to pediatric patients who have experienced adversity.
The review can be found here (leaving Urban's website).