|In the course of researching how best to move the Bingham initiative to change the cultural acceptance of violence against women and children forward, we came across research doctors Felitti and Anda did with 17,000 Kaiser Permanente health plan patients from
1995-97. The remarkable results of that study led us to conclude that concentrating our efforts in the area of early childhood quality care and education would be the most productive method of achieving change.
The Relationship of Adverse Childhood Experiences to Adult Health: Turning Gold to Lead is a short read on how the study was undertaken and the results Felitti and Andadiscovered. Those findings indicate we need to do a better job of providing our youngest residents with early learning and care environments that reduce toxic stress to their developing brains. Toxic stress can come from a number of conditions including domestic violence, abuse and neglect. This serious and prolonger stress releases a chemical that stunts brain cell growth. Children's brains begin
developing before birth and, like the architecture of a house, the architecture of their brains is easier and less costly to get right from the beginning. If we can make early intervention available, we can put in place a preventable system that catches children before they fall. There is much economic data validating the notion that early investments are critical for Maine and the nation.
Because of the early childhood research and its importance in primary prevention of violence against women and children, the Bingham Program, in collaboration with the Washington County Caring Collaborative and Project LAUNCH, brought Dr. Felitti to Maine this summer to discuss his work with people can help make a profound difference in the health and well-being of, not only our youngest residents, but in Maine people no matter what their age.
We invite you to follow some of the links provided below to learn more about the way ACEs have been correlated with obesity, addiction, early death, STDs and teen pregnancy and fetal death.
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