Investigators at the University of Texas have recently conducted a small-scale study, which they say reveals a possible explanation for why experiencing abuse and trauma during childhood leads people to become depressed and addicted later on in life.
This correlation was demonstrated in numerous studies, but exactly how it works has remained a thorny issue of debate for the international scientific community. Now, UT experts suggest that a series of neural networks may be affected by trauma in a way that promotes depression and addiction.
These networks include the superior longitudinal fasciculus (SLF) and the right cingulum-hippocampus projection (CGH-R), experts write in the latest issue of the medical journal Neuropsychopharmacology.
One of the most significant implications of the study is that people who become addicted to drugs or alcohol might in fact be trying to reduce the amount of pain and mental discomfort they feel, rather than simply look for unorthodox pleasures, PsychCentral