Hurricane Sandy Exposure Alters the Development of Neural Reactivity to Negative Stimuli in Children

Ellen M. Kessel, Brady D. Nelson, Autumn Kujawa, Greg Hajcak, Roman Kotov, Evelyn J. Bromet, Gabrielle A. Carlson, Daniel N. Klein

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

3 Scopus citations

Abstract

This study examined whether exposure to Hurricane Sandy-related stressors altered children's brain response to emotional information. An average of 8 months (Mage = 9.19) before and 9 months after (Mage = 10.95) Hurricane Sandy, 77 children experiencing high (n = 37) and low (n = 40) levels of hurricane-related stress exposure completed a task in which the late positive potential, a neural index of emotional reactivity, was measured in response to pleasant and unpleasant, compared to neutral, images. From pre- to post-Hurricane Sandy, children with high stress exposure failed to show the same decrease in emotional reactivity to unpleasant versus neutral stimuli as those with low stress exposure. Results provide compelling evidence that exposure to natural disaster-related stressors alters neural emotional reactivity to negatively valenced information.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)339-348
Number of pages10
JournalChild development
Volume89
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - Mar 1 2018

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health
  • Education
  • Developmental and Educational Psychology

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