WASHINGTON, D.C. Research conducted at the Oregon National Primate Research Center at Oregon Health & Science University and at the University of Pittsburgh suggests a strong link between significant stress early in life and the increased incidence of mental health problems during adolescence. The research strengthens the case for proactive treatment or counseling of children who undergo a significant early-life stress. The research is being presented during the Society for Neuroscience meeting in Washington, D.C., Nov. 12-16. The meeting is one of the largest and most respected gatherings of neuroscientists in the world.
Both past research and human observation reveal that children who experience early-life stresses such as abuse, neglect, or loss of a parent have an increased risk of developing attachment disorders. Later in childhood, these same children show an increased incidence of manifesting some types of behavioral and emotional disorders, including attention deficit/hyperactivity disorder, conduct disorders, anxiety, depression, suicide, drug abuse and post-traumatic stress disorder. Both genetic factors and life experiences appear to play a role in the causes of these mental health disorders.
"Until now only human observation and theories have suggested that early-life stresses can also lead to problems as far away as the teenage years," said Judy Cameron, Ph.D., a senior scientist in the divisions of Reproductive Sciences and Neuroscience at the OHSU Oregon National Primate Research Center. Cameron also is a professor of psychiatry at the University of Pittsburgh. "By studying a species that has responses to early-life stresses that are very similar to young children, we can get a developmental picture that is much clearer than in humans."
Interpretation of human epidemiological studies are often difficult because children experiencing early-life stresses frequently have exposure to many other situations, such as ongoing mentPage: 1 2 3 4 Related medicine news :1
Contact: Jim Newman
Oregon Health & Science University
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