Tuesday, April 12, 2016

Think Tank Tuesday 4/12: Race-based PTSD?

Can post traumatic stress disorder (PSTD) be caused by race-based trauma? The president and CEO of the Black Women's Health Imperative seems to think so:

[... Linda Goler Blount, president and CEO of the Black Women’s Health Imperative, wrote in The Root, July is National Minority Mental Health Month. She offers that watching repeated acts of violence is a source of stress and trauma in Black women. “Research has shown that stress and trauma from racially motivated events create reactions in Black women that are similar to post-traumatic stress disorder,” Blount said. “These reactions include depression, lack of sleep, anger and an inability to get thoughts about what happened out of one’s mind.” “The short-term and long-term impact of the stress that racial violence places on Black women is well-documented,” she added. 

“Allostatic load, the technical term for the physiological consequences of chronic exposure to stress, is at the heart of a number of adverse health effects that disproportionately impact black women, including increased cortisol levels, higher rates of obesity/overweight and higher rates of low birth weight babies. This stress essentially weathers and ages the body, and can lead to premature mortality.” Blount maintains we must ensure Black women have the ability and right to raise their children in a healthy environment. It is about upholding health and wellness for Black women, and a matter of reproductive justice, she suggests.] source: atlantablackstar

What are your thoughts? Do you agree that race-based trauma has caused PTSD in black Americans? 

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