Center for Family Strengthening is dedicated to strengthening families through education and advocacy. The center partners with family support organizations in San Luis Obispo County to provide resources to families in need, protect children from abuse and neglect, and ensure that strong families are a community priority.

Helping families thrive.
DonateNow
News
  • Parent Connection Symposium

    Noted Child and Family Therapist, Ron Huxley, LMFT Speaks at Parent Connection Symposium on September 22, 2017. Understanding Generational Patterns of Parenting Ron Huxley, noted child and family therapist, speaker… Read more…

  • CFS Promotes Staff Member

    Center for Family Strengthening promotes Erica Ruvalcaba-Heredia to Director of Promotores Collaborative. “We are thrilled with Erica’s accomplishments in driving the growth and success of Promotores Collaborative,” said Lisa Fraser,… Read more…

  • CFS Welcomes New Program Coordinator

    Gwendolyn Garcia has joined Center for Family Strengthening as Program Coordinator for CFS’ major programs: Parent Connection, Kidz Tool Box for personal safety, Promotores Collaborative, Central Coast Breastfeeding Coalition and… Read more…

  • CFS moves to new location

    Center for Family Strengthening has moved its corporate headquarters to 3480 South Higuera, Suite 100, San Luis Obispo. Affiliate agency ALPHA Pregnancy and Parenting Support is also moving its corporate… Read more…

  • Central Coast Breastfeeding Coalition Symposium

    Renowned Dr. Paula Meier Speaks at Central Coast Breastfeeding Coalition Symposium May 19.   Researcher, Professor, and Author Dr. Paula Meier Ph.D., RN, FAAN speaks on Breastfeeding the Premature Infant: Bridging… Read more…

Family Violence and Child Abuse

Exposure to violence has a measurable effect, researchers say by Robert Preidt

HealthDay news image

Related MedlinePlus Page

FRIDAY, Dec. 9 (HealthDay News) — Children who are abused or exposed to family violence have changes in brain activity similar to those seen in combat veterans, a new study finds.

The brains of these children become increasingly “tuned” for identifying possible sources of danger, said U.K. researchers who used functional imaging to monitor brain activity.

When the study authors showed pictures of angry faces to children with a history of abuse, the children’s brains showed increased activity in the anterior insula and amygdala, which are involved in detecting threat and anticipating pain.

These changes don’t indicate brain damage but are the brain’s way of adapting to a challenging or dangerous environment, study author Eamon McCrory, of University College London, explained.

The study appears in the Dec. 6 issue of the journal Current Biology.

“Enhanced reactivity to a biologically salient threat cue such as anger may represent an adaptive response for these children in the short term, helping keep them out of danger,” McCrory said in a journal news release. “However, it may also constitute an underlying neurobiological risk factor increasing their vulnerability to later mental health problems, and particularly anxiety.”

The findings are important because of the large numbers of children who are exposed to family violence.

“This underlines the importance of taking seriously the impact for a child of living in a family characterized by violence. Even if such a child is not showing overt signs of anxiety or depression, these experiences still appear to have a measurable effect at the neural level,” McCrory said.

SOURCE: Current Biology, news release, Dec. 5, 2011

Events
Newsletter Sign-up