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Acute, Chronic and Intergenerational/Historical Trauma and the Development of Eating Disorders and Substance Use Disorders

A Part of SunCloud's CME/CEU Program of Events

Presented by special guest, Carolyn Coker Ross, MD, MPH, CEDS

Research consistently links trauma—including historical and race-based trauma—to eating disorders (ED) and substance use disorders (SUD). Studies underscore the significance of evaluating trauma and PTSD in the treatment of ED and SUD. Early childhood trauma can influence the brain’s neural circuitry, fostering traits like compulsivity, impulsivity, and emotional instability, which are foundational to both ED and SUD. Our understanding of trauma has evolved, shedding light on its varied forms and its neural impacts. Research on families of Holocaust survivors, Native populations, and African-Americans reveals that trauma effects can be transmitted to subsequent generations via epigenetic changes, influencing the risk for ED and SUD. Recognizing and addressing trauma and PTSD is crucial; without this, treatment for ED and SUD often fails, resulting in higher relapse rates.

Learning Objectives:

  1. Participants will be able to understand the various ways in which trauma, abuse, and neglect can foster the development of eating disorders and substance use disorders.
  2. Participants will be able to describe the specific effects of trauma, abuse and neglect on the brain
  3. Participants will be able to list 3 treatments that are geared towards improving cognition, impulsivity and recovery from trauma.
  4. Participants will be able to describe how insecure attachment can result from trauma.
  5. Participants will be able to describe prenatal stressors that can affect neurodevelopment.

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Watch the Presentation and Receive 1 CME/CE Credit

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Highlights from the Presentation


About the Speaker

Dr. Carolyn Coker Ross, MD, MPH is an internationally known author, speaker, expert, and pioneer in intergenerational trauma’s effect on one’s body, brain, and beliefs. Ross teaches millions of people about eating disorder treatment and substance use disorder at Psychology Today. Her previous speaking engagements include prestigious leadership bodies such as TedXPleasantGrove, the US Air Force Academy, International Association for Eating Disorder Professionals (IAEDP), Integrative Medicine for Mental Health (IMMH) Conference, US Journal Conference, American Medical Women’s Association Conference, National Association of Treatment Providers, American Society of Addiction Medicine and more. She is the author of three books, the most recent of which is The Food Addiction Recovery Workbook. Make peace with food and body and heal from trauma, and substance use disorders at Dr. Ross’s online coaching website, The Anchor Program™.


Joint Accreditation Statement

Joint Accreditation Statement: In support of improving patient care, this activity has been planned and implemented by Amedco LLC and Galen Mental Health.  Amedco LLC is jointly accredited by the Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education (ACCME), the Accreditation Council for Pharmacy Education (ACPE), and the American Nurses Credentialing Center (ANCC), to provide continuing education for the healthcare team. Amedco Joint Accreditation #4008163.


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