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Nature Or Nurture?

The debate of nature versus nurture has been explored by many people. From caregivers to educators to doctors, many have debated whether our genes make us who we are or whether our experiences shape us into the people we are. There are good arguments for both sides, which has led some people to question why we can’t have both nature and nurture. Here’s the thing: we can! Nature and nurture are not mutually exclusive. Read more about Harvard University’s study done by the Center on the Developing Child below. 

New research has been uncovered that shows that “environmental influences can actually affect whether and how genes are expressed.” Scientists have even concluded that the “early experiences can determine how genes are turned on and off and even whether some are expressed at all.” These new findings now prove that there shouldn’t be a ‘one or the other’ debate — you can have nature and nurture working together to make you who you are. 

Epigenetics and child development

Epigenetics, per the Center on the Developing Child of Harvard University, is “an emerging area of scientific research that shows how environmental influences — children’s experiences — actually affect the expression of their genes.” Chemical markers on the genes are shown to express or not express themselves based on the development of the child. These markers are called epigenomes. Epigenomes are malleable and change with each experience a child has.

Epigenetics and lifelong impacts

The genes that children get from their parents direct what some of their development will be. These are not set in stone, however. Experiences, both positive and negative, are able to manipulate the genes, says Harvard University’s Center on the Developing Child. They call this change a “signature.” Just like our signatures, they are one of a kind. These signatures can be temporary or permanent, depending on the nature of the experience. 

Epigenetics and change

Young children’s brains are like sponges. They soak up their experiences, form relationships, and start to learn new things. The Center on the Developing Child by Harvard University explains that this is why “it is crucial to provide supportive and nurturing experiences for young children in the earliest years.”

Villa Tranquil Recovery wants to help you write positive signatures. We want to provide you and your family with healthy and happy experiences during your recovery. Reach out to us now at 214-799-3080 to learn more about the programs we offer. We can’t wait to hear from you!