The effect of trauma on the brain and how it affects behaviors | John Rigg | TEDxAugusta
TEDx Talks
In his work with trauma patients, Dr. Rigg has observed how the brain is constantly reacting to sensory information, generating non-thinking reactions before our intelligent individual human brains are able to process the event and formulate a self-driven response.
John is a professional musician, who became a physician in his 40s.
This talk was given at a TEDx event using the TED conference format but independently organized by a local community. Learn more at

  • flipaclip comedy
    flipaclip comedy

    Thanks for helping me out. This is a difficult time for me.

  • Amy Chen
    Amy Chen

    Thank you sooo... much Dr. John Rigg! I've had very traumatic events lately, I've behaved in primal instinct ways as you explain. I've never been like that in my life, I thought I had a nervous breakdown, now I can understand my condition and learn how to recover from that. Many thanks for your yoga, meditation, holistic natural treatment and relaxation tips, especially your guitar playing reminds me that music does wonderful for our heart, mind and soul! 👍❤️🇺🇸☮️

  • Kristole Pistole
    Kristole Pistole


  • Daniella Cipollone
    Daniella Cipollone

    Going through PTSD it's disabling been bed bound 4yrs now 🙁

  • Jingyuan Wang
    Jingyuan Wang

    wigs to his mind but boo for being such a boomer

  • jillian 068
    jillian 068

    Great video. Keep up great work for our heros❣️❣️❣️

  • Ken Littlechild
    Ken Littlechild

    For all of that whether good or bad won't matter in the least. He could be 100 times better at guitar, or a thousand times as smart and wise. If he doesn't know why learning to love Jesus is the only thing that really matters his entire life and everyone he has touched would have been better if they had not been born. They will all join with Lucifer and his angels as they scream in agony with the knowledge that the pain will never stop for all eternity, and the creator of heaven and earth, and all that therein is, had prepared an escape for all humans that they were not supposed to spend eternity here. All men have sinned and all deserve the judgement, and all are going to the flames. But our Merciful creator, sent his only begotten son Jesus, which paid the price of all the sins of all the humans, and he redeemed mankind with his life's holy blood which was accepted by God. It only needed to be accepted by each individual, because there is not salvation in any other, as there is none other name, under heaven, which is given among men, by which we must be saved. No other deity, or spell, or technology, or anything, only the real Jesus, which was written of, and foretold and prophesied of, in the Holy scriptures called The Bible. Only he can save you, and he gave his life to do it, you need only believe and ask, and life is yours. May you only learn the truth of this while there is yet time.

  • Corey Pattison
    Corey Pattison

    Hey thank-you editor a****** for the overly loud intro.

  • Elizabeth K
    Elizabeth K

    Another 'dude' bashing women!

  • glorianne papolis
    glorianne papolis

    For a dr you are I'll informed concerning the so called animal brain, Coco new over 1,000 words through sign language, made up word s, was sentient, had compassion for people and other animals, please stop going around calling the reactive brain as the primitive animal brain,

  • who's who
    who's who

    The number 1 problem with 99% of the problems is the hormones and our lack of of knowledge

  • Technoterra TT
    Technoterra TT


  • T M
    T M

    was CPM my fault or was it the Neurosurgeon who brought my sodium up too quickly, why, and why did the hospital hide it


    lol clearly he wanted to be a musician, congrats on becoming a doctor and for serving and having compassion ... we need to put the arts and music back into schools ...

  • Gastro Cook
    Gastro Cook

    I recently needed to have my body checked for peripheral neuropathy. Sure enough the test showed that I had “significant neuropathies”. During the test the Dr. looked at me at one point and asked if I had any trauma during my childhood, and I said yes, quite a bit. So when I returned to the clinic to talk with his Medical Assistant I asked her why he had asked me that, as I was so surprised that no other doctor had asked me that in 57 yrs. She explained that if a child is traumatized it wreaks havoc on the immune system and the wiring within your brain which can lead to auto-immune disorders, chronic pain, PTSD, depression, anxiety, and the list goes on. ALL of which I have, so if you are struggling I do encourage you to seek help somewhere, somehow, etc. Find the path that works for you. The saddest thing about emotional abuse is that it is even harder to heal as it is intangible and therefore others don’t take the “abuse” seriously, or they brush it aside with a typical response, “oh it couldn’t have been that bad”. Not what one needs to hear when trying to get help within the family structure which is causing the abuse. Anyway, I wish all of you the best of luck with your healing and may you find something that speaks to the healing of your whole body, mind and spirit. Be kind to yourselves as you are healing!!

  • Aileen O
    Aileen O

    Volume is really low on this, can it be fixed? Its strange that the TedX entry volume is fine ...

  • chrissy smith
    chrissy smith

    The label mental illness has left to many people unheard as well, and left society with the wrong impression of what it truly is. The label itself should be scrapped as a diagnosis and given its rightful title: Impact Tauma. Maybe a change of labels in the world would allow new perceptions to be more compassionate instead of judgemental when it comes to those that have been broken mentally or emotionally. Be it as children, or adults through life's tragedies.

  • majorbeefy2008

    I want to hear the opposing sex's version of this talk.... He's very accurate...

  • nahr1987

    You’re allowed to say ‘inappropriately short skirt’ in this era? Who edited his speech??

    • Drachenfrau

      His father, apparently. LOL

  • Wolferal

    I bet this guy has a very interesting life story.

  • Claire Marie
    Claire Marie

    The music at the end was the best!

  • Aj Knaup
    Aj Knaup

    Baloney, why do so many videos open with a false premise, like: "you can't control your heart rate, BP" etc., then expect us to take anything else they say seriously? This is a topic which needs to be addressed, by scientists of integrity. TED, you really need to screen these more carefully, they're beginning to tarnish your reputation.

  • Chase H
    Chase H

    so heteronormative i cant focus on his damn point.

  • Sage

    Whoa! He Rocks! Last thing I expected. An amazing start to my day for sure. Ill have to hear it again!

  • Stephen Otoole
    Stephen Otoole

    His hetero normative subtext is kind of annoying

  • Danielle summer Pitmon’s Life
    Danielle summer Pitmon’s Life

    PS I have been through childhood traumas so many different ones and all also caused by my brother and sister and abandonment of my parents as well I suffer every day with my traumas and I am getting help with a psychiatrist and a therapist and temporarily until I can get some other things done then I will be doing trauma focused therapy‘s and eventually reduce if not illuminate all of my meds because of dealing with all the traumas and treating them I hope I can get rid of medications on a permanent base also I was a foster child from birth until age 14 so I grew up in the system but luckily I stayed in one foster home but I will still always worried about if I was going to age out of the system and be put on the street so that has always been a concern to me all my life along with everything else including medical trauma that I had as well and I was adopted by my foster parents after all of my major medical was finished and my foster brother and sister were also adopted no family connection whatsoever

  • Danielle summer Pitmon’s Life
    Danielle summer Pitmon’s Life

    He’s only talking about the reptilian brain which only controls basic bodily functions and that it the regular brain controls thought and rational thinking and all that it does not the reptilian brain does not do any of that only basic bodily functions so I’m sorry but you are completely wrong on what you were saying in the video you need to see a neurologist to find out the truth at all that and a neurologist would completely agree with me from all the studies that they have done on the human brain and none of it is linked to the rep Tilian brain which is right at the cerebral cortex if the rest of the brain is damaged you can’t live with the reptilian brain you just are literally a vegetable but if your reptilian brain is permanently damaged then you die instantly and yet your regular brain which is your brain is actually functional until no more oxygen has been depleted and all of the rest of the brain then dies

  • YouLaToya

    This talk isn’t as long as it appears. It takes the most unexpected turn (in a good way) that I’ve ever seen in a talk.

  • jessica lavallee
    jessica lavallee

    dude is sexist AF

  • Keita Foxy
    Keita Foxy

    I hate how I only go to the mall on certain days and at certain times because I’m afraid to bump into my ex. Or how I’m anxious whenever a car makes the same turns as me and seems to be following me because of what I’ve been through at his hands. I haven’t seen him in about 3 years but I’m still anxious about these things. The worst, are the nightmares that re-emerge whenever I’m stressed out.

    • Kim Wolford
      Kim Wolford

      Keita Foxy I just wanna tell you that I’m sorry for all that you’ve been put through at the hands of another human being. Understanding that I’m a complete stranger, I still want you to know that you’re cared about and regardless of your beliefs, my thoughts and prayers are sincerely with you!

  • sideswiped

    right fighters, anger and or the narcissist come from the same place, years and years of fighting with family members starting from the youngest age

  • Karen Larsen
    Karen Larsen

    👏. That was a great Talk. Thank you.

  • Atriya Wadhwani
    Atriya Wadhwani

    And then he pulls out a Les Paul wtf

  • Sasori Tobi
    Sasori Tobi

    Damn what a ending lol

  • David Nej
    David Nej

    he sounds like the teacher from south park mkay

  • Petrush Macute
    Petrush Macute

    Can self care help this???

  • Brieanna Mohamed
    Brieanna Mohamed

    It's really hard to hear this talk over the blatant sexism 🙄

    • Moth Doc
      Moth Doc

      Brieanna Mohamed could I ask where, haven't been able to watch it.

  • Frankie Carter
    Frankie Carter

    Were all animals everybody everybody

  • Lily Sunshine
    Lily Sunshine

    Stop calling people with PSTD animals for realizing they live on a primitive planet. Wars are started by animals who call themselves loving people. Teaching young vulnerable people to murder each other in the name of something.

    • tim3854

      Stop calling those war-starters animals, it's derogatory to the animals

  • Leah Richmond
    Leah Richmond

    Please also talk about complex PTSD. There was often zero time before the trauma, unlike with PTSD. Therapies are needed specifically for it. Plus, there are way more suffering from C-PTSD than PTSD, not meaning to diminish PTSD, just that it has been recognized for decades now, but C-PTSD has only recently been and is in need of much more recognition and new therapies. Love your guitar solo!

    • tim3854

      Don't expect any real help from mainstream stuff like Ted, mainstream likes to hide abuse. Someone like Richard Grannon is more helpful and won't gaslight as many of the narcissist "help" apparently likes to

  • Nicole Walden
    Nicole Walden

    MOOGIE B & HOT LIPS. Thank u both so very much. I'm 47, no family, and I find it very difficult to trust anyone. I am finally in counilling, I was too scared to get help earlier, STIGMA, is a big problem world wide. I don't think I will ever get over whats happened, especially the triggers. But I can say this, I have forgiven. (For myself), so I can move on and heal. Unfortunately, I just can't forget. My dreams won't let me. Again. Thank u for explaining everything, the way u both did. Honestly. For the first time, I feel someone else understands me. That makes me feel a bit "normal". 🙏

  • kriss lloyd
    kriss lloyd


  • Keona Catrice
    Keona Catrice

    You betta get it on that guitar! Music heals trauma!

  • Hoodiebird

    His voice is strangely relaxing to listen to and the way he talks kinda reminds me of Mr Mackey from South Park!

  • John F
    John F

    Words are like bullets once you fire them you can never take them back

  • Lucy Kacenas
    Lucy Kacenas

    Thank you so much for taking a holistic approach to our health and well being!! I love understanding my brain and how it works! Making my mind a safe place for me to rest is my highest personal goal!!

  • Buzzy Anderson
    Buzzy Anderson

    How about God created the human being to survive and created the amygdala to do exactly as it does for survival.

  • Joe Smith
    Joe Smith

    Doesn't work here and never will?!

  • Kirby Lynch
    Kirby Lynch

    I suffer from NDPH(New Daily Persistent Headaches). He makes sense to me. I’m so tired of taking pain meds but most of these doctors act like they know nothing about the brain

  • Ruby Stone
    Ruby Stone

    Inappropriately tight top and short skirt, ffs !

  • Unojoservir

    You lost me when you started backtracking bc you realized your wife was going to watch this and that youve had wandering eyes. Thats a deep hole you dug. Too late. No research will get you out of that, certainly not the Patriots lol

    • Tina Andreea
      Tina Andreea

      What..are you referring to

  • katins s
    katins s

    We have bigger brains and we rule the world.....huh? Is this really how men think? this is a big ridiculous, he needs to give this tallk at his local mens club

    • katins s
      katins s

      @Tina Andreea Its a bit 1800's

    • Tina Andreea
      Tina Andreea

      He means no other mammals are.

  • Switch Nigs
    Switch Nigs

    This dude is the Donald Trump of physicians

  • Holly

    Probably not a good idea to start off a Ted talk about trauma by discussing the various ways in which men objectify attractive women... just a thought.

    • J бонерт
      J бонерт

      Holly what do you mean?

  • Gala

    We know that traumas affect brain and behavior. Now what?

  • Mich Mon
    Mich Mon

    Best therapist I’ve seen in a series is Siri Sat Nam Singh, PhD his approach is empathetic, can feel what the patient is giving off and hard to explain his demeanor and skill. Watch him on MNsoft Noisey The Therapist with Corey Taylor and Katy Perry. Has sessions with many musicians in this series but those two taught me a lot and wish all therapist were at his level, very effective!!!!

  • Thirston Howell The Bird and Friends!
    Thirston Howell The Bird and Friends!

    1:30 Humans are not dominant because we “think better“ humans are dominant because they are violent, controlling, abusive and power-hungry. There are hundreds of species that are 10,000 times smarter and think much better than humans but because they cannot exert force over humans they do not reign. Humans only reign due to their ability to exert force over others who are weaker. 8:00 this is the same result/dynamic in toxic families and abusive relationships stemming from bullying. Fight or flight is ramped 24/7. Awful.

  • Ruth

    Impressive, interesting, and entertaining video with the guitar at the end. I just wish he could do the Chuck Berry thing and it would have been hilarious.

  • shez

    I have lived a life of unavoidable traumatic experiences all my life, I genuinely mean all my 60yrs, The only way I've learnt to cope, is to rewrite my own life story, visualise what & who I want to be, included with the emotions of excitement, I didn't learn this it was my natural coping mechanism,but over the yrs I learnt through meditation is that when a problem presents itself, I notice how can I handle this, find new ways to behave by changing my thought patterns. I will never dwell on a so-called traumatic experience, I'm here on this earth to learn everything about why I chose this life.

  • Goldie Locks
    Goldie Locks

    Thank you. This makes better sense than what I had made and created in my head. From everything you have basically said. Shifted my perspective for a more positive outcome and day today. Thanks again.