“A heart-breaking, world-shaking, revolutionary book.”

Paul Tough, Author of How Children Succeed

“...brilliantly exposes and explores one of the most critical health issues we face today.”

Bryan Stevenson, Author of Just Mercy

“...a rousing wake-up call...”

Michelle Alexander, Author of The New Jim Crow

“Essential reading for every parent...”

Kamala D. Harris, United States Senator for California

A pioneering physician reveals just how deeply our bodies can be imprinted for life by childhood adversity–and what we can do to break the cycle

Dr. Nadine Burke Harris was already known as a crusading physician delivering targeted care to vulnerable children. But it was Diego—a boy who had stopped growing after a sexual assault—who galvanized her to dig deeper into the connections between toxic stress and the lifelong illnesses she was tracking among so many of her patients and their families.

A study by healthcare giant Kaiser Permanente and the ​Center for Disease Control of more than 17,000 adult patients ​has led to our understanding that “Adverse Childhood Experiences”—like abuse, neglect, parental addiction or mental illness, and even divorce—can have lasting effects on human health. But the stunning news of Dr. Nadine Burke Harris’ research is just how, and how deeply, our bodies can be imprinted for life by these ACEs.  Childhood adversity changes our biological systems, and lasts a lifetime.  From stress responses to growth rates to diabetes, asthma, heart disease, and more, we are all a product of our childhood environments.

Through ​powerful storytelling ​and fascinating scientific ​insight, Burke Harris illuminates her journey of discovery, from research labs nationwide to her own pediatric practice in San Francisco’s Bayview Hunters Point. For anyone who has faced a difficult childhood, or who cares about the millions of children who do, the innovative and acclaimed health interventions outlined in The Deepest Well will represent vitally important hope for​ preventing lifelong illness for those we love and for generations to come​.

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Center for Youth Wellness is not a crisis center. Those experiencing urgent medical or psychiatric concerns should dial 911 or their local emergency agency for assistance. We are unable to respond to messages requesting referrals, treatment or clinical consultations from individuals who are not our patients.