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Adverse Childhood Experiences and Their Impact on Adult Health
September 1, 2015
By: San Diego Black Health Association (SDBHA)
When 10 types of child trauma were measured in a CDC study of 17,000 people in San Diego, researchers were stunned to discover that not only it was very common, but it raised the risk of adult onset of chronic disease to unimagined levels. Even more startling was that these 17,000 people were middle-class, college-educated, mostly white people. Their average age was 57 years old and they all had jobs and good health care, because they were all members of Kaiser Permanente, the health maintenance organization where the study took place.
(San Diego, CA) Local residents are invited to a community education presentation which will begin to explain the health status gap that affects the health status of many African Americans. Shortened life expectancy, excess hospitalizations and avoidable emergency room visits all have a connected source – adverse childhood experiences and the contribution they make to health and well-being. The forum will be held on September 12, 2015 at the Jacobs Center for Innovation from 8:30 am until 12:00 noon.
This community gathering is sponsored by San Diego Black Health Associates Inc. and Harmonious Solutions. The title of the session is “Adverse Childhood Experiences and their Impact on Adult Health”
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Domestic violence presents connections which may originate in adverse childhood experiences. The Center for Disease Control and Prevention reports several alarming facts about domestic violence:
1. Some 63% of all boys age 11-20, who commit murder, kill the man who was abusing their mother;
2. Nearly 75% of boys are present when their mothers are beaten were later identified as having demonstrable behavior problems;
3. Children from homes characterized by domestic violence are five to seven times more likely to experience significant psychological problems relative to children in the general population;
4. More than half of school age children in domestic violence shelters show clinical levels of anxiety or post traumatic stress disorder (PTSD)
5. Witnessing violence as a child is associated with adult reports of depression, trauma-related symptoms and low self-esteem among women and trauma-related symptoms among men
6. Children in homes where domestic violence occurs are physically abuse or seriously neglected at a rate 1500% higher than the national average in the general population.
“We believe that it is important that providers, consumers, advocates, public health professionals and the community unite to address this breach”, said Denise Adams Simms, Executive Director of SDBHA. “Designing multi-disciplinary strategies to integrate mental, physical and emotional components into culturally competent program plans is the work required over the next few years. Fortunately, there are advocates who are prepared to collaborate with us to ensure our success. Together, we will win”
SDBHA is a non-profit organization that has existed for more than 35 years. The mission of the organization is to enhance the health status of African Americans in San Diego.