1) Brain Architecture
Our prefrontal cortex (front of the brain, used for logical thinking and cognitive behaviour) corpus callosum (a thick bundle of nerve fibres that ensures both sides of the brain, left and right, communicate and send signals to each other) and hippocampus (memory and learning centre) shrink in size and capacity, while the amygdala (our threat detector and stress response activator) becomes more enlarged & more reactive.
This is due to high levels of cortisol and adrenaline. Cortisol reduces activity of the hippocampus, while adrenaline revs up the amygdala. In simple terms, our brain architecture aligns behind wanting to stay safe and our lens through which we see the world is danger and fear
2) Hormonal imbalances
Prolonged high levels of cortisol, noradrenaline and adrenaline, as well as ghrelin (hormone produced in the stomach to signal hunger cue to brain, which stress response interferes with) creates greater reactivity to stress. We actually then crave stress energy, as it becomes our conditioned and dominant state of being. Eventually, high levels of these stress hormones can lead to long term damage to cells, structures of the body, and other hormone glands such as the thyroid.
3) Toxin Elimination
When we are in trauma and stress, our energies are directed away from the digestive, renal & reproductive systems and brought to the cardiac & respiratory systems, all intentionally to mobilise us. If we stay stuck in this response, over time the intestines and kidneys become contracted and less able to eliminate toxins from the body. This is caused by low vagal nerve tone, weak parasympathetic nervous system, resulting in a slow gut, poor motility, as well as microbiome and flora imbalances.
4) Nervous System Dysregulation
We are left with a supercharged sympathetic nervous system, while our parasympathetic nervous system is weaker and unable to bring us back into balance, baseline and homeostasis. This causes a multitude of issues, emotionally, mentally, physically and physiologically. We essentially live in a body that feels unsafe, each nerve cell is waiting for the next threat. We are hyper-vigilant and energetically imbalanced beings, hardwired to pain and fear, and lacking in pleasure.
5) Weak Immune System
If the body is conditioned to high cortisol levels, it can then show resistance to lower cortisol levels which can create acute and chronic intlammation, usually showing up in various bio markers. This is the root cause of many sicknesses such asthma, arthritis, fibromyalgia, diabetes
6) Brain Waves
When we activate into defence mode, our beta brainwaves go into hyper-motion, sending messaging through the Amygdala. The brain produces high beta, which makes your brainwaves fast and hyper active. Predomination of these brain waves can cause inability to concentrate and low attention span, poor memory retention and forgetfulness, brain fog, racing thoughts, and can trigger anxiety physiologically
It’s proven that those stuck in a traumatised system are vulnerable to addiction problems (drugs, alcohol, sex, relationships, exercise, shopping, food). This is due to the dopamine transmitters/receptors being not fully developed or damaged. Dopamine is our reward, pleasure and feel good hormone. Interruptions to these receptors can reduce motivation and focus, create fatigue, cause lowness and depression (serotonin levels will also be low) while it’s also linked to Parkinsons disease
The effects of trauma is intergenerationally passed on through epigenetic mechanisms, such as methylation. Specifically, childhood trauma alters methylation patterns in human sperm, which induces intergenerational effects through gene expression. This is proven scientifically. Hence why health issues (cancer, heart problems, etc) “run in the family”.
9) Cellular change
Trauma shortens telomeres. These are DNA–protein structures found at both ends of each chromosome. They protect genome from nucleolytic degradation, unnecessary recombination, repair and interchromosomal fusion. They play a huge role in preserving the information in our genome. If shortened they cause premature aging and reduced reproduction of cells. This can cause cancer. Epigenetics turns genes on or off in adaptation to threatful environments. This effect can last generations ie ancestral trauma
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