Why Trauma Matters

Close to 50% of all children experience some form of trauma before reaching adulthood. 

The Center for Disease Control recognizes Child Trauma as a public health issue, as trauma has destructive and wide-reaching effects on the individual, families and society.

Children who have suffered trauma often need more medical intervention for heart and other diseases, substance abuse, mental health problems and suicide attempts. 

What is Trauma? 

Child Trauma is defined as the experience of an event that is emotionally painful or distressful, which often results in lasting mental and physical effects.

 

The Center for Disease Control identifies three categories of traumatic childhood experiences:

 
Physical
Emotional
Sexual

NEGLECT

Physical
Emotional

HOUSEHOLD DYSFUNCTION

Divorce
Imprisonment
Substance Abuse
Mental Illness

Profound Effects of Trauma

 

  BEHAVIORAL

EFFECTS

  • Early alcohol use and alcoholism [1]
     
  • Suicide attempts [2]
     
  • Sleep disturbances [3]
     
  • Tobacco use during adulthood [4]

MENTAL AND PHYSICAL

EFFECTS

  • Increased incidence of obesity and diabetes [5]
     
  • Increased risk for heart attack, stroke, and COPD [5]
     
  • Depression, anxiety [6]

 SOCIETAL EFFECTS

  • Delays in academic development 
     
  • Increased violence, criminal behavior, and incarcerations [5]
     
  • Absenteeism and decreased professional and academic performance
 

Research

1. Emily F. Rothman, et al. "Adverse childhood experiences predict earlier age of drinking onset: results from a representative US sample of current or former drinkers."Pediatrics Aug 2008, 122 (2). (Link)

2. Merrick, Melissa et al. "Unpacking the impact of adverse childhood experiences on adult mental health." Child Abuse & Neglect (2017), 69 (10-19). (Link)

3. Kajeepeta, Sandhya et al. “Adverse Childhood Experiences Are Associated with Adult Sleep Disorders: A Systematic Review.” Sleep medicine 

(2015) 16.3: 320–330. (Link)

4. Ford, ES, et al. "Adverse childhood experiences and smoking status in five states." Preventive Medicine (2011), 53 (3): 188-193. (Link)

5. Hughes, K., et al. " The effect of multiple adverse childhood experiences on health: a systematic review and meta-analysis." Lancet Public Health (2017) 2 (8): 356 - 366. (Link)

6. Venter, M, et al. "The relationship between adverse childhood experiences and mental health in adulthood. A systematic literature review." Journal of Psychiatry (2013) 55 (4): 259 - 268. (Link)

7. Ege. Margaret, et al. "Adverse Childhood Experiences and Geriatric Depression: Results from the 2010 BRFSS" American Journal of Geriatric Psychiatry (2015). 23 (1): 110-114. (Link)

 

© About Child Trauma 2019

929 Main Street, Suite 248
Mount Joy, PA

717-928-4681

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