Childhood Trauma Affects Children and Adults

Adverse Childhood Trauma (or ACE’s) can contribute to chronic health conditions and negative coping mechanisms in adults.

According to the CDC, “The CDC-Kaiser Permanente Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACE) Study is one of the largest investigations of childhood abuse and neglect and household challenges and later-life health and well-being.”

The ACE Score is used to assess the total amount of
stress during childhood and has demonstrated that as the number of ACEs increase, the risk for the following health problems increases in a strong and graded fashion:

 Alcoholism and alcohol abuse
 Chronic obstructive pulmonary
disease (COPD)
 Depression
 Fetal death
 Health-related quality of life
 Illicit drug use
 Ischemic heart disease (IHD)
 Liver disease
 Risk for intimate partner violence
 Multiple sexual partners
 Sexually transmitted diseases (STDs)
 Smoking
 Suicide attempts
 Unintended pregnancies
 Early initiation of smoking
 Early initiation of sexual activity
 Adolescent pregnancy

Centers for Disease Control, “About the CDC-Kaiser ACE Study”

So what are ACE’s, anyway? These instances in the household can negatively affect a child as he/she grows:

  • Abuse (emotional, physical, sexual)
  • Mother treated violently
  • Substance abuse in the household
  • Mental illness in the household
  • Parental separation or divorce
  • Incarcerated household member
  • Neglect (emotional or physical)

Do you want to take the ACE test?

Free resources for adults dealing with childhood trauma:

COMING UP TOMORROW: Prevent Childhood Trauma with Parenting Resources

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