Latest Blog Post
Trauma-Informed Health Decision Making
1/3/2022 4:30:59 PM
Those impacted by traumatic events and toxic stress are known to have shifts in decision making related to their health (e.g., substance use, risky sexual behavior, and disordered eating). Trauma leads to risk health behavior via coping behaviors (e.g., using substances to cope with intense emotions) and impulsivity (i.e., a lack of inhibition). Thus, increasing traumatic experiences across the globe relevant to the pandemic are likely to impact health decision making and associated costs in health care needs. One of the major features explaining the impact of trauma on health decision making is its impact on emotion regulation. Experiences with trauma increase the intensity and frequency of emotions such as fear, anger, and hurt – which result in increased difficulty concentrating in day-to-day life, planning ahead, and in the moment decision making. Thus, making health decisions is complicated by a history of trauma.