Childhood Trauma and Neural Development

Indicators for Intervention with Special Reference to Rural and Remote Environments

Dr Pieter Rossouw



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Current Neurobiological research indicates that most mental illnesses begin earlier in life than was previously believed. An alarming epidemiological study of 10,000 adolescents in the USA indicates that one in every four to five youths meets the criteria of a mental disorder with severe impairment across the lifetime. The study indicates the need for strategies that are based on prevention and early intervention. Studies indicate the need for enhancing neural development by decreasing exposure to unhelpful stressors that up regulate the HPA (hypothalamus-pituitary-adrenal) axis. Schonkoff and colleagues (2011) indicate that interventions that enhance executive function and self-regulation and enhance the abilities of vulnerable mothers (beginning as early as pregnancy), offer promising markers to protect the developing brains of their children from detrimental neural development.

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Cite as:
Rossouw, P.J. (2012). Childhood Trauma and Neural Development: Indicators for Intervention with Special Reference to Rural and Remote Environments. Retrieved month day, year, from

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