It is a known thing that stress has negative effects on the body. I have personally experienced the joy of breaking out (cough, FINALS WEEK, cough) or eating everything in sight as soon as my stress levels start raising through the roof. There are many situations that can cause stress, not just school. Family problems and violence are one of the more traumatic issues kids have to deal with first in life. Studies show that the stress actually have a very negative effect on the body; it wears down DNA.
Telomeres are found on the end of chromosomes and they act as caps that keep the DNA from unraveling. Telomeres get shorter each time the cell divides, until they get so short that the cell can no longer divide at all. Smoking, obesity, psychological disorders and stress have been found to possibly accelerate that process of telomere loss. A new study, run by Idan Shalev, a post-doctoral researcher in psychology and neuroscience at the Duke Institute for Genome Sciences & Policy, followed 1,100 British families with twins since the time the twins were born. The twins are now 18, but the researchers have taken DNA samples from them at ages 5 and 10 as well. The researchers also interviewed the twins' mothers extensively, and know which ones have been subjected to the stress of physical and mental violence as a child. Studies showed that the children who experienced two or more forms of violence as a child had serve telomere loss, which in the long run can lead to poorer survival and chronic disease. It is extremely sad; a child should not have to experience violence at such a young age to begin with. Something like that can cause enough problems in life. Unfortunately, it can effect health in more ways than we thought.
Taylor Pirog (2)