Navigation Links
Early abuse tied to more depression in children
Date:2/4/2010

Although children can be depressed for many reasons, new evidence suggests that there are physiological differences among depressed children based on their experiences of abuse before age 5. Early abuse may be especially damaging due to the very young age at which it occurs.

Those are the findings of a new study of low-income children that was conducted by researchers at the University of Minnesota and the University of Rochester, Mt. Hope Family Center. The study appears in the January/February 2010 issue of the journal Child Development.

Children who experience maltreatment, including physical, sexual, and emotional abuse or neglect, grow up with a lot of stress. Cortisol, termed the "stress hormone," helps the body regulate stress. But when stress is chronic and overloads the system, cortisol can soar to very high levels or plummet to lows, which in turn can harm development and health.

The researchers studied more than 500 low-income children ages 7 to 13, about half of whom had been abused and/or neglected, to find out whether abuse early in life and feelings of depression affected their levels of cortisol. High levels of depression were more frequent among children who were abused in the first five years of their lives than among maltreated children who weren't abused early in life or children who weren't maltreated at all.

More importantly, only children who were abused before age 5 and depressed had an atypical flattening of cortisol production during the day, whereas other children, whether they were depressed or not, showed an expected daily decline in cortisol from morning to afternoon. This finding means that the body's primary system for adapting to stress had become compromised among children who were depressed and abused early in life. The results suggest that there are different subtypes of depression, with atypical cortisol regulation occurring among children who were abused before age 5.

The authors suggest that early abuse may be more damaging to developing emotion and stress systems because it happens as the brain is rapidly developing and when children are more dependent on caregivers' protection. Moreover, because it's harder for very young children to discern the clues predicting an abusive attack, they may be chronically stressed and overly vigilant, even when they're not being abused.

"In the United States, more than 1.5 million children are abused and neglected every year, though it's estimated that the actual rates are substantially greater," according to Dante Cicchetti, McKnight Presidential Chair and professor of child development and psychiatry at the University of Minnesota, who led the study.

"The results of this study have significant implications for children in the child welfare population and underscore the importance of providing early preventive interventions to children who have been abused."


'/>"/>

Contact: Sarah Hutcheon
shutcheon@srcd.org
202-289-7905
Society for Research in Child Development
Source:Eurekalert

Related biology news :

1. Carnegie Mellons John Kitchin receives early career award
2. Pancreatic Cancer Action Network-AACR Pathway to Leadership Grant awarded to Johns Hopkins Early Career investigator
3. Early immune response needed for hit-and-hide cancer viruses
4. In early heart development, genes work in tandem
5. Scientists create early-warning system to defend rare Jersey cows from continental disease
6. NSAIDs: Take em early and often when competing? Think again
7. Study shows nearly 1/3 of human genome is involved in gingivitis
8. Study shows pine bark improves circulation, swelling and visual acuity in early diabetic retinopathy
9. UNH prof. receives nearly $500,000 to research environmentally significant plants
10. Picis ED PulseCheck Increases Security and Privacy Protection in Nearly 150 Hospitals Through the Use of DigitalPersona Biometrics
11. Early life on Earth may have developed more quickly than thought
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:3/23/2016)... 2016 Einzigartige ... und Stimmerkennung mit Passwörtern     ... MESG ), ein führender Anbieter digitaler Kommunikationsdienste, ... SpeechPro zusammenarbeitet, um erstmals dessen Biometrietechnologie einzusetzen. ... Möglichkeit angeboten, im Rahmen mobiler Apps neben ...
(Date:3/22/2016)... OTTAWA, Ontario , PROVO ... 2016 Newborn Screening Ontario (NSO), which operates ... for molecular testing, and Tute Genomics and ... process management technology respectively, today announced the launch of ... new next-generation sequencing (NGS) testing panel. ...
(Date:3/18/2016)... --> --> Competitive Landscape Analysis ... Physical infrastructure and Perimeter Surveillance & Detection Systems ... and the continuing migration crisis in the Middle ... led visiongain to publish this unique report, which is crucial ... & security companies in the border security market and the ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:6/23/2016)... ... June 23, 2016 , ... STACS DNA Inc., the sample ... the Arkansas State Crime Laboratory, has joined STACS DNA as a Field Application Specialist. ... said Jocelyn Tremblay, President and COO of STACS DNA. “In further expanding our capacity ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... Calif. , June 23, 2016  Blueprint Bio, ... biological discoveries to the medical community, has closed its ... Matthew Nunez . "We have received ... with the capital we need to meet our current ... essentially provide us the runway to complete validation on ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... , ... June 23, 2016 , ... ... exhibiting at the Pennsylvania Convention Center and will showcase its product’s latest features ... will also be presenting a scientific poster on Disrupting Clinical Trials in The ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... FRANCISCO , June 22, 2016  Amgen (NASDAQ: ... sponsorship of the QB3@953 life sciences incubator ... human health. The shared laboratory space at QB3@953 was ... overcome a key obstacle for many early stage organizations ... part of the sponsorship, Amgen launched two "Amgen Golden ...
Breaking Biology Technology: