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Adverse childhood experiences and multiple mental health outcomes through adulthood: A prospective birth cohort study

Gondek, D; Patalay, P; Lacey, RE; (2021) Adverse childhood experiences and multiple mental health outcomes through adulthood: A prospective birth cohort study. SSM - Mental Health , 1 , Article 100013. 10.1016/j.ssmmh.2021.100013. Green open access

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Abstract

Objective: Exposure to adverse childhood experiences (ACEs) is associated with a broad range of mental health-related outcomes. Previous studies tended to use retrospectively reported ACEs, measure mental health outcomes at a one time point in adulthood and focus on individual outcomes. Hence, this study aimed to examine the association between prospectively and retrospectively measured ACEs and a wide range of mental health-related outcomes, spanning ages 16 to55, using a prospective birth cohort, representative of those born around 1958 in Great Britain. Methods: The study used the 1958 National Child Development Study (n ​= ​7980). Adverse childhood experiences were measured both prospectively and retrospectively, and combined into ACE scores. The associations between the ACE scores and mental health were quantified with linear regression for continuous and robust Poisson regression for binary outcomes. Results: We found a dose-response association between prospectively and retrospectively reported ACEs and all studied mental health-related outcomes, after accounting for multiple covariates. Among those with 2+ (vs 0) prospective ACEs, the risk of clinically significant psychological distress was up to 2.14 times higher, and of seeing a mental health specialist up to 2.85 times higher. Conclusions: Our findings reiterate the need for early-life interventions to reduce inequalities in mental health.

Type: Article
Title: Adverse childhood experiences and multiple mental health outcomes through adulthood: A prospective birth cohort study
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
DOI: 10.1016/j.ssmmh.2021.100013
Publisher version: http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.ssmmh.2021.100013
Language: English
Additional information: © 2021 The Authors. Published by Elsevier Ltd. This is an open access article under the CC BY-NC-ND license (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/bync-nd/4.0/).
Keywords: Adverse childhood experiences, Mental health, Psychological distress, National child development study
UCL classification: UCL
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Population Health Sciences > Institute of Cardiovascular Science
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Population Health Sciences > Institute of Cardiovascular Science > Population Science and Experimental Medicine
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Population Health Sciences > Institute of Cardiovascular Science > Population Science and Experimental Medicine > MRC Unit for Lifelong Hlth and Ageing
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Population Health Sciences > Institute of Epidemiology and Health
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Population Health Sciences > Institute of Epidemiology and Health > Epidemiology and Public Health
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/10132708
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