Jump to:  A   |   B   |   C   |   D   |   E   |   F   |   G   |   H   |   I   |   J   |   K   |   L   |   M   |   N   |   O   |   P   |   Q   |   R   |   S   |   T   |   U   |   V   |   W   |   X   |   Y

Childhood Trauma May Harm the Heart Decades Later

Childhood Trauma May Harm the Heart Decades Later

MONDAY, Dec. 18, 2017 (HealthDay News) -- Experiencing trauma as a child or teen apparently makes you more susceptible to heart disease.

A new scientific statement from the American Heart Association (AHA) says that people who were abused, bullied, witnessed violence or had other traumatic experiences when they were children or teens are at increased risk for heart disease.

The AHA based its stance on a review of published studies that found a strong association between traumatic experiences in childhood or teen years and the chances of developing conditions such as obesity, high blood pressure or type 2 diabetes in early adulthood.

In turn, those conditions increase the risk for heart and blood vessel diseases, such as coronary artery disease, heart attack and stroke.

The statement was published Dec. 18 in the journal Circulation.

"The real tragedy is that children are exposed to these traumatic experiences in the first place," Shakira Suglia, who chaired the group that wrote the statement, said in an AHA news release.

"We are talking about children and teens experiencing physical and sexual abuse, and witnessing violence," she said. "Sadly, the negative consequences of experiencing these events do not end when the experience ends. It lasts many years after exposure."

Suglia, an associate professor of epidemiology at Emory University in Atlanta, added, "Ideally, we want to prevent these things from happening in the first place as well as preventing the health consequences that arise from having these experiences."

Nearly 60 percent of Americans report having had a traumatic experience during childhood, according to the AHA.

Along with abuse, neglect and witnessing violence, these experiences can include: parental divorce, separation or death; parental substance abuse; living in a neighborhood with a high crime rate; homelessness; discrimination; poverty; and the loss of a relative or another loved one.

It's not clear how traumatic experiences affect heart health, but research suggests that behavioral, mental health and biological reactions to elevated stress may all play a role. However, the authors added that the evidence is observational and doesn't prove cause and effect.

More information

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention offers tips to prevent heart disease.

SOURCE: American Heart Association, news release, Dec. 18, 2017

Reviewed Date: --

This content was reviewed by Mid-Atlantic Womens Care, PLC. Please visit their site to find an Mid-Atlantic Womens Care obstetrician.

Find a pediatrician
Helpful Information
Mid-Atlantic Womens's Care
Childrens Orthopedics and Sports Medicine
Dr. J. Marc Cardelia
Dr. Allison Crepeau
Dr. Cara Novick
Dr. Jeremy Saller
Dr. H. Sheldon St. Clair
Dr. Carl St. Remy
Dr. Allison Tenfelde
Sports Medicine
Dr. Joel Brenner
Dr. Aisha Joyce
Dr. David Smith
Neurology
Dr. Sarah Chagnon
Dr. Thomas Enlow
Dr. L. Matthew Frank
Dr. Ralph Northam
Dr. Dayna Perkowski
Dr. Crystal Proud
Dr. Svinder Toor
Dr. Larry White
Dr. Ryan Williams
Health Tips
Helping Kids Get Over their Fears
How Old Is "Old Enough" for Contacts?
Is It Time for Toilet Training?
Keep Kids Safe During Yard Work
Reading to Kids Helps Their Development
Sports and Music: Both Good for Kids
Weight Room No Longer Off-Limits to Kids
Quizzes
Child Development Quiz
Heart Health Quiz
Heart Quiz for Women Only
Teen Health Quiz
NewsLetters
Anxiety and Heart Disease: Women Take Note
Diseases & Conditions
Adolescent (13 to 18 Years)
Adolescents and Diabetes Mellitus
Amenorrhea in Teens
Anatomy of a Child's Brain
Anatomy of the Endocrine System in Children
Anomalous Coronary Artery in Children
Anxiety Disorders in Children
Asthma in Children Index
Becker Muscular Dystrophy (BMD) in Children
Bone Marrow Transplant for Children
Brain Tumors in Children
Breast Conditions in Young Women
Chemotherapy for Children: Side Effects
Cuts and Wounds of the External Ear
Cuts and Wounds of the Mouth and Lips
Discipline
Ewing Sarcoma in Children
Female Growth and Development
Firearms
Gynecological and Menstrual Conditions
Hepatitis B (HBV) in Children
High Blood Pressure in Children and Adolescents
Home Page - Adolescent Medicine
Home Page - Cardiovascular Disorders
Inflammatory and Infectious Musculoskeletal Disorders
Inflammatory and Infectious Neurological Disorders
Inguinal Hernia in Children
Insect Bites and Children
Kidney Transplantation in Children
Major Depression in Teens
Meningitis in Children
Menstrual Cramps (Dysmenorrhea) in Teens
Menstrual Disorders
Minor Injuries Overview
Mood Disorders in Children and Adolescents
Muscle and Joint Injuries
Myasthenia Gravis (MG) in Children
Oral Health
Osteosarcoma (Osteogenic Sarcoma) in Children
Overview of Adolescent Health Problems
Pap Test for Adolescents
Pediatric Blood Disorders
Posttraumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) in Children
Pregnancy and Medical Conditions
Pregnancy and Pre-existing Heart Disease
Preparing the School-Aged Child for Surgery
Schizophrenia in Children
School-Aged Child Nutrition
Skin Injury in Children
Sports Safety for Children
Superficial Injuries Overview
Television and Children
Thalassemia
The Growing Child: 1 to 3 Months
The Growing Child: 10 to 12 Months
The Growing Child: 2-Year-Olds
The Growing Child: 4 to 6 Months
The Growing Child: 7 to 9 Months
The Growing Child: Adolescent (13 to 18 Years)
The Growing Child: Newborn
The Growing Child: Preschool (4 to 5 Years)
The Growing Child: School-Age (6 to 12 Years)
The Heart
The Kidneys
Your Child's Asthma
Your Child's Asthma: Flare-ups

Disclaimer: This information is not intended to substitute or replace the professional medical advice you receive from your child's physician. The content provided on this page is for informational purposes only, and was not designed to diagnose or treat a health problem or disease. Please consult your child's physician with any questions or concerns you may have regarding a medical condition.