How Childhood Trauma Can Impact Your Physical Health

Mindful Healing_How Childhood Trauma Can Impact Your Physical Health

There is a consensus in the wellness community that there exists a mind-body connection. Mental health contributes to physical health. PTSD and Trauma can have an immediate impact on brain chemistry. In youth, this can also impact the development of the neurocircuitry. There can also be long-term physical impacts on the body that can lead to cardiovascular disease and high blood pressure leading to heart attack and strokes.

Let’s Talk Brain Impact

Stress creates a chain reaction that starts in the brain. In the short term, your emotional processor, the amygdala, sends signals to your command center, the hypothalamus, to increase heart rate, deeper intake of oxygen, more adrenaline, and cortisol is released to compensate for the energy spent during the chain of events.

This chain reaction is beneficial under moderation, but with PTSD these signals are always being sent and it can be a non-stop continuous chain reaction. In short, you produce too much cortisol which can kill brain cells and even reduce the size of the brain.

PTSD Impact on the Heart

We should add the caveat that there needs to be more research on the correlation between stress and PTSD and heart disease, but it is agreed that people with PTSD have a higher risk of heart disease. This means that PTSD may also lead to behaviors that are directly related to heart disease like substance abuse. Even if we remove those factors, PTSD also leads to physical contributions of heart disease like high blood pressure and increased cholesterol levels.

PTSD Impact on the Rest of the Body

Under stress, your liver produces extra blood sugar to give you a boost of energy. If this becomes chronic you could develop type 2 diabetes and then a domino effect of physical issues can arise. It can impact a male’s testosterone levels and sexual drive for both genders. Finally, your immune system gets weakened and you become more susceptible to the flu and the common cold—as well as other infections.

PTSD Can Be Treated

When you have PTSD, it might feel like you’ll never get your life back, but it can be treated. More importantly, you are not alone. There are many people realizing that help is available. Treatment for PTSD can improve your symptoms (see list of 22 PTSD symptoms), teach you skills to cope with PTSD, and restore your self-esteem. You can find the strength you did not know you had.

Do I Need Insurance to See a Therapist?

No. In fact, at Mindful Healing Portland LLC., we accept clients on a sliding scale. We are currently accepting clients for our sliding scale rates.

If you live in Portland or the Portland area and want information or help with PTSD and Trauma,