The Healthiest Way to Deal With Memories of a Traumatic Childhood

Posted on February 28, 2017

Photo: flickr

Abuse and neglect from childhood can carry adverse effects all the way until adulthood. Those who experience these kinds of trauma will generally have lower standards of health as adults compared to the average person. To investigate ways of overcoming these aftereffects of childhood trauma, a study published in the Journal of Preventive Medicine finds that adults who are accepting of their past but focused on the present can increase their physical health.

Over two thousand adults participated in the study. Results showed that about 25% had experienced at least three out of eight types of childhood adversity such as parental drug addiction. In addition, nearly 30% had three or more stress-related health conditions such as depression or headaches. These findings implied that many of the negative childhood experiences had long-lasting effects on one's mental and physical health.

However, the study finds that participants who experienced the greater levels of childhood adversity but were rated high on mindfulness reported the least amount of stress-related health conditions. This implies that adults who were more accepting of their past experiences and were focused more on the present were 50% less likely to have multiple health conditions. Author Robert Whitaker also commented that those who had higher levels of mindfulness reported better everyday functioning, such as getting enough sleep.

Source material from PsyBlog

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