The Missing Link: The Impact of Childhood Trauma on Health

My guest Kimberly Pierce is a medical provider whose life was changed, both personally and professionally, after attending a conference on the damaging effects of childhood trauma and how these experiences predict health issues later in life. She talks about how incorporating a simple screening tool known as ACE (Adverse Childhood Experience), into her practice has dramatically impacted the lives of her patients and inspired her to create the documentary film “The Faces of ACE’s.”

Kimberly Pierce has been practicing as a Physician’s Assistant at a rural Vermont clinic for the last 37 years and has become a passionate advocate for understanding the impact of trauma on health. In this episode, Kim discusses:
  • The groundbreaking results of the ACE (Adverse Childhood Experience) health study 
  • How stress causes sometimes devastating physiological changes in the body
  • How the solution to childhood trauma is community
  • The impact of incorporating the ACE screening tool into her patient visits 
  • The influence of trauma on epigenetic expression
  • The devastating impact of inter-generational, cultural and racial trauma
  • How important it is for children to have at least one person take a genuine interest in them
  • The role of shame 
  • There’s hope because healing can happen
  • How her documentary, “The Faces of ACE’s” came to be

To contact Kim Pierce, send an email to

For information about Brene Brown’s work on shame and vulnerability

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