Biological Markers of Stress

PI, Dr. Jodi Ford, College of Nursing,

The Ohio State University –

As homeless youth experience a greater number of stressful events, and with higher levels of severity on a daily basis and across their lifetime, than youth in the general population, our lack of understanding of the biological impact that these exposures have on homeless youths’ physical and mental health in the short-term, as well as across their life span, limits understanding of which youth are most vulnerable and in need of intervention. This study tested youths’ cortisol levels and compared them to those of non-homeless youth. Findings showed that youth had 4 times the levels of cortisol stress as non-homeless youth.

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