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Japanese Culture and Childhood Trauma

Nadine Burke Harris’ healthcare practice focuses on a little-understood, yet very common factor in childhood that can profoundly impact adult-onset disease: trauma.

[Via TED] “Childhood trauma isn’t something you just get over as you grow up. Pediatrician Nadine Burke Harris explains that the repeated stress of abuse, neglect and parents struggling with mental health or substance abuse issues has real, tangible effects on the development of the brain. This unfolds across a lifetime, to the point where those who’ve experienced high levels of trauma are at triple the risk for heart disease and lung cancer. An impassioned plea for pediatric medicine to confront the prevention and treatment of trauma, head-on.”

Interactive script in Japanese translated by Shoko Takaki and reviewed by Masaki Yanagishita

Why the interest in how childhood trauma affects health across a lifetime? Well, mainly due to my interest in Trauma and PTSD, except I am curious to know if culture plays a roles in the type of social disorders seen in Japan. How does Japanese societal experiences during childhood, especially during a traumatic event such as a natural disaster, weigh on matter? The PTSD Research Quarterly provides the following:

“Japan is of interest because of its cultural distinctiveness. The role of culture in shaping either the phenomenology or epidemiology of PTSD in Japan was not analyzed very thoroughly in most of the work reviewed, but there were exceptions that provide some insight: Trauma in the General Population of Japan, Mass Trauma in Japan and The Role of Japanese Culture.

You can read the study here. What do you think? Is there a correlation between Japanese cultural norms and childhood trauma in Japan?

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