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Associations Between Adverse Childhood Experiences, Psychological Distress, and Adult Alcohol Problems

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Abstract:

Objective: To examine the mediating role of psychological distress on the relationship between adverse childhood experiences and adult alcohol problems by gender. Methods: Linear and logistic regression analyses were conducted on 7279 Kaiser-Permanente members, aged >18 years. Results: Psychological distress mediated significant proportions of alcohol problems associated with childhood emotional abuse and neglect, physical abuse and neglect, mental illness in the household, parental separation or divorce, sexual abuse, and household drug use among women and mental illness in the household, emotional neglect, physical abuse, household drug use, and sexual abuse among men. Conclusion: It may be important to identify early childhood trauma and adult psychological distress in programs that focus on reducing alcohol abuse.

Keywords: ALCOHOL ABUSE; CHILD ABUSE; CHILD NEGLECT; MENTAL ILLNESS

Document Type: Research Article

DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.5993/AJHB.36.3.11

Affiliations: 1: Epidemiologist, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention; Office of Surveillance, Epidemiology and Laboratory Services; Public Health Surveillance Program Office; Division of Behavioral Surveillance; Atlanta, GA, USA. tws2@cdc.gov 2: Lead Health Scientist, Office on Smoking and Health, National Center for Chronic Disease Prevention and Health Promotion, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Atlanta, GA, USA 3: Psychologist, Emerging Investigations and Analytic Methods Branch, Division of Adult and Community Health, National Center for Chronic Disease Prevention and Health Promotion, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Atlanta, GA, USA 4: Core Faculty, Public Health, School of Health Sciences, College of Health Sciences, Walden University, Minneapolis, MN, USA 5: Clinical Director of Williamsville Wellness, Faculty at Walden University, Senior Faculty at Cambridge College, Mechanicsville, VA, USA 6: Faculty at Walden University, Faculty at Western Michigan University, Walden University, Minneapolis, MN, USA 7: Northrop Grumman Corporation, Contractor, Division of Behavior Surveillance, Public Health Surveillance Program Office, Office of Surveillance, Epidemiology and Laboratory Services, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Atlanta, GA, USA 8: Chief, Emerging Investigations and Analytic Methods Branch, Division of Adult and Community Health, National Center for Chronic Disease Prevention and Health Promotion, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Atlanta GA, USA

Publication date: May 1, 2012

More about this publication?
  • The American Journal of Health Behavior seeks to improve the quality of life through multidisciplinary health efforts in fostering a better understanding of the multidimensional nature of both individuals and social systems as they relate to health behaviors.

    The Journal aims to provide a comprehensive understanding of the impact of personal attributes, personality characteristics, behavior patterns, social structure, and processes on health maintenance, health restoration, and health improvement; to disseminate knowledge of holistic, multidisciplinary approaches to designing and implementing effective health programs; and to showcase health behavior analysis skills that have been proven to affect health improvement and recovery.

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