Learn the NEW SCIENCE of Health and Justice
through 6 branching modules - with links to videos, illustrations, peer-reviewed publications, and key websites
THEN envisions a new approach to Medical Science showing the connections between a person’s experience, Brain-Body Regulation and disease.
This new paradigm, based in System Science and emphasizing Trauma, Health Equity, and Neurobiology - has the
potential to TRANSFORM medical science. The implications are profound if, as we have come to believe (and supported by thousands of basic science studies),
traumatic experience disrupts brain function and the communication between brain and body through altered signaling.
The disrupted, dysregulated signaling triggers inflammation and other physiologic changes that are a root cause of most chronic disease and myriad other health and social problems.
SYSTEM SCIENCE is a scientific method that uses the perspective of the whole organism.
– sees the Whole and the Parts,
– recognizes the importance of information flow (SIGNALING) among the Parts and the Whole,
– and analyzes the history (EMERGENCE) of the patterns of information flow throughout the Whole Brain-Body over a person's LIFE COURSE
SYSTEM is a collection of things (molecules, biologic cells-tissues, etc) that organize themselves into a collective whole, sharing information and
What medical science calls "DISEASE" is an abnormal PATTERN that has developed in the Brain-Body through modification of SIGNALING. A very powerful force to disrupt SIGNALING and REGULATION is the experience of TRAUMA.
TRAUMA is the direct, personal experience of harm (or threatened harm) to self or others.
TRAUMA is a major disrupter of BRAIN-BODY REGULATION.
If severe, repeated or prolonged, TRAUMA can result in major neurobiological changes and dysfunction, including physical disease, emotional suffering or premature death.
Although the many types of TRAUMA are somewhat distinct, for any person - all forms of TRAUMA are intertwined – and synergistic (the impact on the BRAIN-BODY is CUMULATIVE).
A major, but often unrecognized, type of Trauma-Adversity is early life DEPRIVATION. Deprivation is the absence of essential needs necessary for development or for life itself. Deprivation may include intentional NEGLECT but more often is due to the parent's own emotional distress or distraction. Without parent-child ATTACHMENT-ATTUNEMENT interaction, the developing child does not receive loving touch or interaction, thereby preventing development of normal brain network function.
HEALTH EQUITY “Equity is Justice. Health Equity is Social Justice in Health.” (Paula Braveman, 2014).
Pursuing Health Equity means taking action to reduce Health Disparities.
Commitment to HEALTH EQUITY means accountability to:
- actively work for culture change - within healthcare & society - to ensure safety-respect of all
- provide resources to ensure everyone's basic needs are met
- remove barriers, and
- dismantle systemic discrimination such as social, economic, and healthcare exclusion.
HEALTH DISPARITY is the differences in the burden of disease and early death experienced by marginalized and oppressed populations.
HEALTH DISPARITY was once considered to be primarily due to lack of access to healthcare - OR from differences in care by healthcare providers. Increasingly the roots of Health Disparity are recognized as coming from changes in the Brain-Body from traumatic life experiences (including Everyday Discrimination).
NEUROBIOLOGY is the study of the BRAIN, the AUTONOMIC NERVOUS SYSTEM, the PERIPHERAL NERVOUS SYSTEM and all the connections - as an integrated whole system with the Body: the BRAIN-BODY.
Scientific research conclusively demonstrates the intimate connections and communication between the nervous system and tissues throughout the body, particularly integration with the immune system.
In past centuries, neuroscience focused on individual neurologic cells (neurons, glia) and on parts of the brain (brain cortex, nuclei, etc.). Now Neurobiology has expanded to study how the individual cells and parts communicate (SIGNALING) and function in as-needed assemblies (BRAIN NETWORKS). Over the past 30 years, Neurobiology has demonstrated how experience actually changes the structure and the function of the Brain.
THEN's team has taken this science to the next step: Practical Clinical Applications.
On this website, we offer SAMPLE tools to rethink:
o Partnering with Patients to develop individualized care and prevention
o Using a developmental, regulatory approach, reconstructing the patient's history to understand the patient's current condition,
o Training clinicians how to use Sensitive Inquiry to invite patients to share their story (including trauma) at their own pace
o Creating an individualized Life Course chart for each patient
o Developing a Care Plan focused on Brain-Body Regulation
We also offer Clinician Training Programs including in-depth Case Studies.