Very few people would agree that even the most powerful words can’t do much harm. Most of us know that that is not the case.
Words can hurt and sometimes, they can be more painful than physical pain. New study shows that childhood bullying, no matter how safe might seem to some people, can be dangerous and has worse consequences than we previously thought.
It is a fact that certain parts of the brain are still in the development phase years after the birth. The environment of the child influences the development of the brain a lot.
No brain develops the same way as another and that’s why experiences during childhood can cause effects on the brain.
Scientists have already suggested that any type of verbal abuse, also including bullying, can have negative effects. Apparently, we are still not aware how negative those effects could be. Researchers have discovered that this type of abuse can actually change the structure of the brain.
In a new study published in the American Journal of Psychiatry, the researchers worked with youngsters at the age between 18 and 25 who have never experienced domestic violence or any type of physical abuse.
The scientists scanned the brains of the youngsters after asking them to rate the exposure to verbal abuse in their childhood.
After running psychological tests of the participants, it was discovered that the youngsters who were bullied in their childhood had greater level of depression, anger, anxiety and hostility, which was probably caused by underdeveloped connections in their brains.
Previous studies have shown that brain development of a child or youngster is often impaired in socially unhealthy environments, such as sexual and/or physical abuse or domestic violence.
However, this new research lists bullying and verbal abuse among the factors who have long-term effects on the brain.
Furthermore, the researchers noticed that the youngsters who were bullied during middle school were most affected. So, even so many years after the birth, the brain development can be affected and impaired.
“Verbal abuse can cause significant psychological problems in later years and brain damage, including anxiety, depression, anger hostility and dissociation,” the researchers working on the study concluded.
Another research study about verbal abuse and its effects shows that females are more inclined to endure verbal abuse, from peers or parents.
Moreover, there are several other studies that show the negative effects verbal abuse can have on the brain.
What’s the connection between anxiety and verbal abuse?
Actually, it has to do with the ego. Narcissistic people enjoy manipulating people in order to have control over them. Thus, the victim is influenced by the negative words heard from the narcissist.
Often, narcissist find individuals who are emotional to manipulate them with their words and actions. The study shows that these words can have long-lasting effects, which often results in anxiety or depression.
If you want to know more about verbal abuse and its effects, watch the following video.