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Toxic Stress

August 22, 2012

I will be blogging somewhat more frequently about Chugachmiut’s Restoration to Health (RtH) initiative now as we move to implement the board’s strategy. It is important that the knowledge behind the strategy is disseminated more widely. This first blog is about the impact of Toxic Stress on the human brain. I want to share the documents that helped us develop our RtH initiative.

The Adverse Childhood Experience (ACE) Study provides valuable knowledge about the link between what happens to a child who grows up with trauma as they are raised and both their adoption of coping behaviors to deal with the stress accompanying the trauma and their health outcomes later in life. A summary of the ACE Study is available at: http://www.cdc.gov/ncipc/pub-res/pdf/childhood_stress.pdf.

The American Academy of Pediatrics issued a policy statement about the impact of “Toxic Stress” on the developing brain, which can be found at: http://pediatrics.aappublications.org/content/129/1/e224.full.pdf. The Policy statement was accompanied by a technical report supporting the policy statement, and that can be found at: http://pediatrics.aappublications.org/content/early/2011/12/21/peds.2011-2662. The documents combined describe the science effectively.

Finally, here are three videos that describe the developing brain from the Center on the Developing Child at Harvard University. Dr. Jack Shonkoff, an author of both the AAP Policy statement and technical paper is director of the Center. http://developingchild.harvard.edu/index.php?cID=428

I will be building off of this knowledge in future blogs.

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