Experience of Childhood Trauma from Child Abuse/Maltreatment

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Author/
date
Aim of study/paper Type of study/ research design IV/ Covariates/Mediators/Moderators DV/ Outcome Main and secondary findings Strengths
Archer, G., et al. (2017). Examining the relationship between experienced childhood abuse and physical functioning in adulthood. Cohort study Poor physical functioning, childhood abuse, neglect. At least 20% of participants assessed reported having problems relating to physical functioning involving completing mundane tasks (Archer et al., 2017, p. 1). Sexual and physical types of abuse as well as neglect were primarily associated with weakened physical condition and problems in physicality at age 50 and were independent of other types of abuse. The combination of different types of abuse and maltreatment significantly raised the odds of later development of physical problems. Usage of longitudinal data from birth to 50 years in a British cohort; examination of associations between 3 levels of adjustment: sex, early-life covariates, and different types of maltreatment occurring simultaneously.
Bolton, J. et al. (2017). The study focuses on exploring the connection between early-life stress and later behavioral outcomes, involving altering the hippocampus and subsequent memory defects, as well as anhedonia. It compares animals’ models of caregiving to human ones, using it as a point of reference. Review Mammals, early life stress, anhedonia, behavioral disturbances. Stress has an enormous influence on the brain that is particularly vulnerable in its developing stages in children. Thus, early life stress, such as maltreatment, has serious effects on the child’s neurological structure. A test on maternal separation on postnatal day 9 leads to improvement of memory, while the same test showed opposite results on day 4. In rodents, as in humans, the maternal role is vital to the normal development of the child or pup. Intermittent maternal separation “decreases the quantity of maternal care” and leads to intermittent stress (p. 134). Using “standardized cognitive and emotional tests” data conducted on rodents to explore later-life consequences of child maltreatment.
Buckingham, E. T., & Daniolos, P. (2013). Outlines the long-term physical and psychosomatic consequences such as the high risk of developing mental illnesses, substance abuse, and depressive conditions as well as physical conditions. Review High-risk behaviors, substance abuse, post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), major depressive disorder (MDD). Childhood maltreatment produces various long-term consequences, the most common ones being major depressive disorder and post-traumatic stress disorder. In treatment, several approaches or a combination of them can be applied: psychotherapy either substituted by or combined with pharmacological treatment of abused individuals. The research also found a link between chronic physical conditions of adults and their experienced maltreatment as children. Provides a better overview by listing not just long-term but short-term and immediate consequences, as well as offering intervention solutions.
Carr, A., Duff, H., & Craddock, F. (2018). To define the outcomes of childhood-experienced trauma in childcare and to understand the amount of research that has been done on the topic. Systematic review Childhood maltreatment, physical abuse, sexual abuse; Current systematic review found the evidence of studies on childhood maltreatment is limited: “49
documents describing 21 primary studies and 25 secondary studies were identified and reviewed” (p. 13).
Most of the research studies reviewed were retrospective, not prospective; most used convenience other than probability samples, which can be considered a limitation (2018). Mental health was highly mediated by adversities experienced as a child; physical health, as well as psychosocial factors, were had a strong link to abuse as well. Usage of 10 major databases as well as a review of 49 pieces of research, which attributes to a deep understanding of the scope of research in this particular niche.
Clemens, V. et al. (2019) To assess whether the long-term consequences of household dysfunction are mediated by child maltreatment as well as various dysfunctions affecting the child facing complications in adulthood; Cohort study Mental illnesses, types of household dysfunction Household dysfunction and, as a result, child maltreatment are the determining factors of later developing mental disorders and toxic behavioral patterns The hypothesis was verified – child maltreatment was mediated by household dysfunction The child’s health – mental and physical – was mediated fully or partly by maltreatment due to household dysfunction A sample of the German population was obtained from a demographic consulting company; to ensure the accuracy of results, the sample was divided into 5160 private households
Crum, K. I. & Moreland, A. D. (2017). Accesses the relationship between parental stress and child abuse, as well as the ways parental stress affected the child’s mental health consequences at various stages of development, including long-term ones. Cohort study Parental stress, child abuse potential Overall, the study confirmed the findings of previous research, finding that “parental stress was consistently linked” with to potential abuse of their children, which, in turn, was linked to a child developing adverse mental outcomes. Contrary to expectations, child aggression was not mediated by the caregiver’s abuse potential. Greater abuse potential by a caregiver was directly associated with the lack of a child’s social competence. Usage of structural equation model.
Currie, J. & Widom, C. S. (2010). Examines the economic well-being of subjects of childhood trauma long into adulthood; Cohort study Subjects with a history of childhood maltreatment or neglect proved to be less likely to have less education, a skilled job, own a bank account, a vehicle, or a home. The results showed a bigger likelihoodof the participants with experience of childhood trauma to be economically stable, not a direct influence Female subjects were influenced by their childhood trauma more than their male counterparts. During the interviews the participants were blind to the purpose of the study and unaware of the abused/non-abused delineation, which ensured accurate samples
Dannlowski, U. et al. (2012). To investigate the neurobiological underpinnings between child maltreatment and the development of PTSD and depression in adulthood; Imaging study Psychiatric disorders Childhood maltreatment leads to remarkable structural and functional changes in the brain, which in turn leads to the higher risk of developing psychiatric disorders in adulthood The decrease of gray matter in subjects with a history of maltreatment A strong connection between amygdala responsiveness to negative facial expressions and reduced hippocampal volumes with previously experienced childhood maltreatment Using functional magnetic resonance imaging (method for eliciting responses to fearful facial expressions) and voxel-based morphometry
Esparza-Del Villar, O. A., et al. (2020). Developing a scale that will be used to measure child abuse and neglect in adults, thus examining the impact of these forms of child maltreatment on individuals in their adult life, as observed from a Northern Mexican sample. Analysis Factor analysis, sexual abuse, physical abuse. The long-term mental-physical outcomes of CM have significant, recurrent association with various factors assessed by the child abuse and neglect (CAN) model. The rates of long-term effect were a little bit higher in this Juarez cohort compared to the previous studies done in different parts of the world — 35,9% against a global rate of 22% (Villar et al., 2020, p. 20). Overall, the study found the Mexican cohort to be higher than the statistics reported by the World Health Organization on matters of physical and emotional abuse. Includes a cohort that has never been previously studied in terms of experienced child abuse and neglect – people from the North Mexico area, particularly the city of Juarez.
Godinet, M. T. et al. (2014). To analyze the trajectory of child behavior problems
as a result of maltreatment and assess the role of race and gender;
Cohort-study Gender and race Race was not proven to modify the relationship between child’s maltreatment and their behavioral problems. Girls experienced a more pronounced impact of maltreatment over time. Boys experienced a decrease in the impact over time. Based on data from the Longitudinal Studies on Child Abuse and Neglect (LONGSCAN)
Johnson, R. M. et al. (2015). Examines mental health-related outcomes of childhood maltreatment as well as images of violence witnessed at a young age. Article Abuse, violence, mental health The study found a direct association between early exposure to sights of violence as well as experience of being maltreated by the caregivers with later development of mental disorders and social deviation behaviors. Child self-reports indicated higher numbers of children being exposed to violence (77%), while caregiver reports indicated that 46% of children were only affected by moderate levels of violence. Both exposure to neighborhood and family violence and maltreatment affect the child’s mental health negatively. The study is longitudinal, utilizing a sample of the population and not a clinic;
Usage of MANOVA & ANOVA models of analysis.
Johnson, E. J. & James, C. (2016). Attempts to bring the psychosocial consequences to clarity via utilizing Cognitive Behavior Theory as well as Systems Theory in therapy practice. Article / case study Mental disorders, child abuse The case study revealed that childhood psychological and emotional abuse continued to influence the person’s life long into adulthood and when he was living outside of his childhood home, despite his claims that it was the opposite. For the intervention to be successful, it needs to consist of three steps: “identification of strengths, development of goals, and establishment of contact” (p. 7). Self-esteem problems of child maltreatment victims may result in lowered sexual advances in males. Addresses the rare topic of assessment and treatment of long-term maltreatment effects of adults; showcases the effects of maltreatment in a case study.
Lee, R. D., & Chen, J. (2017) a) To study the influence of childhood adversity on adult mental health and alcohol behaviors

b) To understand whether adult negative behaviors vary by sex, ethnicity, and race;

Cohort study (or sample) Race/ethnicity and sex Adverse childhood experiences impacted depression and excessive alcohol consumption among men and women in the same fashion. Non-Hispanic blacks who experienced child abuse were three times more likely to heavy drinking than non-Hispanic blacks who did not experience it. Child abuse contributed to the risk of heavy drinking among Hispanics Used 60,598 interviews from the 2010 Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance
System

Real sampling and observation.

Lewis, T. et al. (2016) To compare the behavioral problems of those with a history of sexual abuse and those with no sexual abuse; Qualitative study Age, sexual abuse, gender Children who suffered from sexual abuse had more behavioral problems than those who were maltreated without abuse Problems were more significant for sexually abused boys than girls Behavioral problems increased with age Data drawn from a number of respectable sources
Lueger-Schuster, B., et al. (2018). The study explores childhood maltreatment occurring in foster care – as well as draws comparisons of the extent of that trauma and the current condition of adult’s mental health. Cohort study Foster care, PTSD, mental health disorders; The group of adults that were raised in foster care reported a significantly greater amount of maltreatment experienced and more severe types of it than the comparison group. The individuals tested were prone to disclose more of their experiences online than face-to-face; thus, the foster care online group provided more evidence for emotional abuse and neglect than others. Emotional abuse has the most severe long-term consequences in adult life. Provides coverage on a scarcely studied topic – child abuse in foster care and its longitudinal outcomes.
Milojevich, H. M., Norwalk, K. E., &Sheridan, M. A. (2019). To assess the effects of exposure to child abuse and neglect on the participants’ mental health. Cohort-study Race Greater use of regulation strategies was associated with being African American. White and other races reported worse total regulation. Whites were more likely to use avoidant strategies. Used data from the Longitudinal Studies on Child Abuse and Neglect (LONGSCAN)
Nakayama, M. et al. (2020). Examines the effect that PTSD acquired as a result of previously experienced childhood trauma can have on the cognitive abilities of adults – including memory, language, attention, and others. Cohort study Post-traumatic stress disorder, sexual abuse, cognitive function Greater risk of development of cognitive imparities either concerned with language, memory, or general functioning, was indeed associated with CM, even if the subjects developed PTSD later in life. In healthy individuals, previously experienced childhood trauma did not influence any cognitive dysfunctions, which is crucial to this study. Childhood maltreatment does not only cause psychological, emotional negative outcomes but also alters the “stress-related biological systems” of the body, including HPA axis dysfunction (Nakamyama et al., 2020, p. 7). Usage of Repeatable Battery for the Assessment of Neuropsychological Status (RBANS), a very reliable neuro-assessment system.
Nemeroff, C. (2016) To summarize the biological alterations associated with childhood maltreatment. Literature review Psychiatric and medical disorders Negative early life experiences can influence the development of the nervous system. Maltreatment contributes to adverse changes in neurotransmission. Child maltreatment contributes to emotional vulnerability. Supported by grants for the NIH
Norman R.E. et al. (2012) To provide better coverage on the topic of long-term consequences of child maltreatment. A systematic review; meta-analysis. Psychiatric disorders, substance abuse, suicidal tendencies, risky sexual behavior. A causal relationship was found during the process of this research – instances of childhood maltreatment had a profound impact on the development of a wide range of mental disorders later in life. A “dose-response relationship” was found: children that experienced a severe form of maltreatment were, subsequently, at greater risk of developing mental/physical health problems than those with less severe CM experiences. Physical abuse at childhood was a significant factor in increasing the odds of the individual having alcohol/substance abuse as an adult. Employs such datasets as EMBASE, Medline, PsycINFO; Causality was determined via Bradford Hill criteria.
Odhayani, A. A., Watson, W. J. & Watson, L. (2013). Discussion of emotional and behavioral consequences of childhood abuse to inform the practicing clinicians to understand and recognize the problem when they encounter it in their practice. Clinical Review Behavioral deviations, disordered psychological development. Childhood maltreatment proved to have a direct influence on the further development of a child psychologically and socially. It is a cause of many deviations and dysfunctions that individuals struggle with later in life. The general condition of a child might be the indicator of abuse – such as withdrawal or clinging to strangers. Signs of physical injuries may not only show on parts of the body typical for physical abuse but around the genitals and eyes, which were done by the child themselves. Usage of data from a variety of sources: MEDLine, PsycINFO,
EMBASE, and CINAHL.
Papalia, N. L., et al. (2016). To cover the niche topic of co-occurrence of long-term psychiatric disorders and behavioral deviations in individuals with a history of childhood maltreatment. Cohort study Long-term effects, child sexual abuse, psychiatric disorders. It has been established by this study that “abuse victims were more likely to experience cumulative adverse psychiatric and behavioral problems relative to comparisons” from the general population (Papalia et al., 2016, p. 1). Maltreatment victims were significantly more inclined to come into contact with public mental health organizations to commit a crime—the presence of mental disorders was higher among the victims of CM as well. The study found that the perpetrator of child sexual offense was a relative in 63% of females and 36% in male victims (Papalia et al., 2016, p. 4). Provides a base of acquired knowledge on the infrequently studied topic, co-occurrence of psychiatric disorders, and behavioral complications, such as criminal behavior – despite child maltreatment’s long-term effects being studied thoroughly.
Sheats, K. J. et al. (2018) To identify disparities related to violence experienced by young blacks in the US. Cohort study Race/ethnicity Young blacks, compared with
young whites were found to be at disproportionately high
risk of violence.
Black participants who had adverse childhood experiences were more likely to report frequent mental distress and heavy drinking. Blacks subjected to child abuse developed coronary disease more frequently than whites. Utilizes four independent data sets.
Scheuer, S. et al. (2018). To investigate whether allostatic load, being a measurement of various bodily dysfunctions, is indeed mediated by experienced childhood trauma; to clarify the relationship particularly between depression and childhood abuse. Cohort study Mental illness, depression, sexual abuse, physical abuse. It was established that particularly physical abuse, and not a sexual one, was connected to the development of depression in adulthood and was mediated by the allostatic load. An interesting detail that became known during the process of this study was that the extent of the effect was dependent on the age – middle-aged and young participants exhibited higher rates of allostatic load. Older participants showed a stronger immunity towards stress and development of depression as a result, even though they had a history of childhood maltreatment as well. Pioneering the means of identifying allostatic load biomarkers, which is crucial for further research in the field.
Strathearn, L. & e al. (2020). To integrate results from Mater-University of Queensland Study of Pregnancy to understand direct associations of particular types of maltreatment with their long-term consequences. Summary Maltreatment types, age, race, marital status, education Overall, childhood maltreatment resulted in a wide array of physical, psychological, behavioral, and social developmental deviations – this review only explored it further, naming particular deviations for each type. The observed notion was that emotional abuse alone or in combination with neglect led to far more adverse outcomes than other types of maltreatment. Risky sexual behavior is not linked to any particular type of child abuse but rather constitutes a prevalent consequence in most types of abuse. Using the results of a cohort study by Mater-University that spanned over 20 years; thus, providing rich and cohesive data for further analysis.
Taylor, J. et al. (2016). Exemplifying a strong connection between experienced childhood trauma and chronic illness development later in life. Article Child abuse, physical chronic diseases Childhood maltreatment affects society in a number of aspects: in the public health sphere, in the economic sphere, as the costs for medical treatment are high and CM tends to occur in low-income families, thus depleting them of income further. The consequences of CM cannot be fully cured. An individual with a history of childhood maltreatment imposes a risk for future generations of their family, as the consequences of CM affect parenting behaviors directly. CM impacts the health of an individual via two pathways: due to the usage of coping mechanisms that affect the health negatively, as well as exposure to high levels of stress that affect the health and well-being of an individual directly. Takes references from multiple credible studies and gives a well-rounded overview of the CM, exemplifies the magnitude of the problem.
Vachon, D. D. et al. (2015). Compares the longitudinal effects of different child maltreatment types, such as physical abuse, sexual abuse, and neglect. Cohort study Physical abuse, emotional abuse, sexual abuse, neglect Different types of childhood maltreatment have equal psychological and psychiatric consequences and show equally both in boys and girls who experienced it. Treatments aimed at specific types of childhood maltreatment experiences are less effective than those designed to prevent early changes in the neurobiological structure of a child’s brain. Child sexual abuse is one type of childhood mistreatment that is usually accompanied (89% of cases) by other types of CM; thus, it becomes hard to distinguish the effects sexual CM and non-sexual types of CM produce in a child. Using Child Report (Children’s Depression Inventory) and direct Peer Reports from children evaluating the characteristics of their peers.
Widom, C. S. et al. (2012). To examine the long-term consequences of neglect for children of different races. Cohort study Race/ethnicity, age. Neglected black children were two times more likely to be arrested for violence than black who did not experience neglect. Black children demonstrated more anxiety and dysthymia than other races and ethnicities. Hispanic children compared to other participants showed an increased risk for alcohol problems. Used interviews of 1,039 individuals.
Yampolskaya, S., Chuang, E., & Walker, C. (2019). To study the trajectories of substance use among children and adolescents with maltreatment experiences. Cohort-study Age, gender, race Hispanic children and youth had an initial level of substance use, which was substantially higher than among other races. Black participants showed lower baseline levels of substance use. Black participants also demonstrated an increase in substance use over time. Based on the National Survey of Child and Adolescent Well-Being
Substance Use & Misuse 3 (NSCAW II).
Young, J. C., & Widom, C. S. (2014). To determine whether childhood abuse has long-term emotion-processing effects and affects the individual’s IQ rate and mediate psychopathological and psychopathic deviations in the future. Cohort study IQ, PTSD, psychopathy, emotion processing, anxiety, major depressive disorder (MDD). A history of childhood maltreatment was directly associated with accuracy in emotion recognition, as hypothesized. Contrary to the hypothesis, the researchers found that psychopathy did not predict the accuracy of emotion recognition. Negative consequences of childhood maltreatment expand into a variety of different areas of a person’s life, which might explain the “increased risk for deficits for emotion processing” (p. 2). The participants were blind to the aims of the interview that was conducted in the process of this study.

Annotated Bibliography

Archer, G., Pinto Pereira, S., & Power, C. (2017). Child maltreatment as a predictor of adult physical functioning in a prospective British birth cohort. BMJ Open, 7(10), e017900. Web.

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The study examines the direct relationship between childhood trauma and the character of physical functioning long into adulthood on the basis of the British cohort – following the participants from the 1950s to 2000s. The current study holds extreme value for further research because of the amount of data collected over 50 years of ongoing monitoring of the cohort – and a range of information sources. The aim of the research was to identify whether or not poor physical functioning was associated with maltreatment experienced in childhood and whether it was independent of other factors. This research established that physical and sexual abuse altered the physical condition of participants and that the combination of different types of abuse resulted in a significant increase of deterioration of physical functioning.

Bolton, J., Molet, J., Ivy, A., & Baram, T. Z. (2017). New insights into early-life stress and behavioral outcomes. Current Opinion in Behavioral Sciences, 14, 133-139. 

The present study aims to understand the mechanisms behind the long-lasting consequences of early-life stress exposure. The researchers accomplish that by comparing the results of a number of cognitive and emotional tests conducted on rodents, modeled after human maltreatment or neglect. Some of the results were unexpected: as varying postnatal days when practicing maternal separation (MS) mattered significantly for the outcome it produced on the neurological structure of the pup. Another one, the forced swim test (FST), showed great results as to exposing memory impairment being strongly associated with early-life stress.

Buckingham, E. T., & Daniolos, P. (2013). Longitudinal Outcomes for Victims of Child Abuse. Current Psychiatry Reports, 15(2). Web.

The study provides additional coverage for the topic – long-term consequences of maltreatment of children. Aside from that, in this review, the authors offer potential psychiatric intervention strategies for the maltreated individuals. Authors explore the trajectories of mental disorders development, substance abuse, and chronic physical conditions and their probability in maltreated people. There is strong evidence for MDD and PTSD development as a result of childhood abuse established in this research, as well as reactive attachment disorder (RAS), a less common disease. In the end, possible intervention strategies are discussed: authors are first believers in the fact that every case is unique, and therefore, a clinician should design a treatment for each individual patient. However, they still give two possible ways that can be combined, when necessary: psychiatry and pharmacological treatment.

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Carr, A., Duff, H., & Craddock, F. (2018). A Systematic Review of the Outcome of Child Abuse in Long-Term Care. Trauma, Violence, & Abuse, 152483801878915. Web.

This piece of research is an impressive systematic review covering a big set of data from ten different databases. Its primary aim was to evaluate the coverage of a narrower topic in the scholarly conversation about child abuse – maltreatment in long-term care that could be just as crippling as one at home. The findings include an obvious connection between mental health conditions in adulthood and childhood adverse experiences, with a similar situation with psychosocial factors. The value of this particular review is in its wide coverage of reviewed studies, as well as a constructive critique of this batch of previous research.

Clemens, V., Berthold, O., Witt, A., Sachser, C., Brähler, E., Plener, P. L. & Fegert, J. M. (2019). Child maltreatment is mediating long-term consequences of household dysfunction in a population representative sample. European Psychiatry, 58, 10–18. Web.

This research is an assessment of whether various forms of household dysfunction such as parental substance abuse, mental disorders, violence against the mother, and incarceration of a family member mediate child maltreatment. Moreover, the study is aimed at examining if these dysfunctions produce further mental and physical health complications for the child later in life. As a result, a direct link between household dysfunction, child maltreatment, and future negative consequences on the child’s health was found.

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Crum, K. I., & Moreland, A. D. (2017). Parental stress and children’s social and behavioral outcomes: The role of abuse potential over time. Journal of Child and Family Studies, 26(11), 3067-3078. Web.

The study explores the paradigm of parental stress and its direct influence on the child’s psychological and physical development due to maltreatment often being subsequent to parental stress. It explores connections between parental stress and abuse potential through panel analysis of self-reports and after therapeutic intervention. The results showed that parental stress and anxiety/withdrawal were indeed interconnected. However, for instance, child aggression was independent of abuse potential and parental stress. Thus, the study sheds light on many individual associations between distinct behavioral deviations and parental abuse potential.

Currie, J., & Widom, C. (2010). Long-term consequences of child abuse and neglect on adult economic well-being. Child Maltreatment, 15(2), 111–120. Web.

This study explores the quality of economic aspects of the subjects of childhood maltreatment who are in their adulthood. The authors suggest an idea that previously experienced childhood adversity may lead the individuals to be less likely to pursue higher education levels or a skillful job and overall economic security. It proves the hypothetical suggestion that people with a history of maltreatment are less likely to establish a sufficient economic future for themselves. The research also finds differences in gender in the severity of the effect of childhood maltreatment: women tend to be more deeply affected than men.

Dannlowski U., Stuhrmann A., Beutelmann, V., Zanzger., P., Lenzen T, Grotegerd D., Domschke K., Hohoff, C, Ohrmann P., Bauer J., Lindner C., Postert C, Konrad C., Arolt V, Heindel, W., Suslow T., & Kugel H. (2012.) Limbic scars: Long-term consequences of childhood maltreatment revealed by functional and structural magnetic resonance imaging. Biological Psychiatry, 71(4), 286-293. Web.

This study focuses specifically on the problem of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and depression development as a result of experienced childhood adversity and maltreatment. To examine the neurological effects of childhood maltreatment, the researchers conducted a brain screening during a test in order to locate abnormalities in the brain structure, as well as Childhood Trauma Questionnaire (CTQ) to identify their experiences. The abnormalities include a general decrease in gray matter mass and a positive response in the amygdala during the functional magnetic resonance imaging (FMRI) test. As a result, the study was able to locate a direct influence of childhood trauma on the later development of psychiatric disorders, such as depressive states and PTSD later in life.

Esparza-Del Villar, O. A., Montanez-Alvarado, P., Gutierrez-Vega, M., Quinones-Rodriguez, S., & Gutierrez-Rosado, T. (2020). Past Child Abuse and Neglect in Adults from Northern Mexico: Development of a Scale and Prevalence. Journal of Interpersonal Violence, 088626052094372. Web.

Here the researchers focused particularly on the development of a convenient scale that could be utilized to measure childhood maltreatment and neglect effects in adults. The scale was developed for the purpose of this study and proved to be useful, as it showed a number of long-term mental and physical outcomes to be connected to the factors accessed by the model. The results of the study were not predictable: they showed the North-Mexican cohort to have a higher than global average rate of childhood maltreatment.

Godinet, M. T., Li, F., & Berg, T. (2014). Early childhood maltreatment and trajectories of behavioral problems: Exploring gender and racial differences. Child Abuse & Neglect, 38(3), 544–556.

This research paper centers on examining the trajectories of child maltreatment, whether or not early childhood maltreatment (before the age of four) affected the long-term behavioral deviations. The study also examines the role of gender and ethnicity in the rates of reported cases of child maltreatment and their long-term consequences. Godinet is a credible author and a professor at the University of Hawaii and has conducted numerous studies in the field of Sociology concerning the representation of Pacific Islanders and child welfare. The current study found a direct link between gender and the appearance of earlier internalizing problems among female children; boys were associated with externalizing problem behavior. Race was also found to be affecting the results, with African-Americans being the most affected racial group. Thus, the study is very closely related to the topic of discussion and can be considered very relevant.

Johnson, R. M., Kotsh, J. B., Catllier, D.J., Winsor, J. R., Dufort, V., Hunter, W., & Jackson, L. A. (2002). Adverse behavioral and emotional outcomes from child abuse and witnessed violence. Child Maltreatment, 7(3), pp. 179-186. Web.

The research differs from the others in the scale that it views the problem of childhood maltreatment – it explores the boundaries of factors that affect the child’s psychological development when witnessed on a regular basis. These include neighborhood violence, such as the child witnessing arrests or fighting, and household violence – such as abuse towards to mother. Due to these factors, child victimization becomes a much greater possibility. Having studied child self-reports as well as caregiver reports, the research team was able to locate the direct link between early experiences of violence along with maltreatment with later developing mental and social deviations.

Johnson, E. J., & James, C. (2016). Effects of child abuse and neglect on adult survivors. Early Child Development and Care, 186(11), 1836–1845. Web.

The focus of this study is on the emotional aspect of childhood maltreatment (CM) and the types of abuse associated with affecting the victim’s emotional well-being. It explores the long-term effects: the development of various mental and physiological conditions such as depression, anxiety, post-traumatic stress disorder, poor aggression management, eating disorders, and suicidal tendencies. Qualitative methods were used during the process of data extraction. In a case study, a 26-year-old man was also analyzed during a series of interviews, which allows the reader to see the problem at hand. During these sessions, cognitive-behavioral therapy was utilized to gain a deeper understanding. The results presented by this study identify possible models for successful intervention for adults affected by CM.

Lee, R. D., & Chen, J. (2017). Adverse childhood experiences, mental health, and excessive alcohol use: Examination of race/ethnicity and sex differences. Child Abuse & Neglect, 69, 40-48.

The topic studied in this paper is even narrower than the previously mentioned studies concerning a particular problem or demographic. Here, Lee examines and evaluates the connection between alcohol abuse and previous early maltreatment. The findings include similar results in all groups under discussion, all genders and all ethnic groups show similar behaviors (with the exception of binge drinking). However, the research confirmed the trend that the female population is greatly affected by the incidences of abuse at an early age compared to the male population. However, in the course of the study, researchers uncovered some unanticipated results as well – that race and ethnicity were, in fact, contributing to the problematic behavior of binge and heavy drinking. Therefore, the study could be helpful in establishing new connections between childhood maltreatment experiences and the cultural reference of an individual. Lee can also be considered to be a reliable author, with several publications in the field of disease prevention and control. This research paper could prove to help provide instances of deviant behavior consequent to childhood trauma, which is one of the main questions of the current research.

Lewis, T., McElroy, E., Harlaar, N., & Runyan, D. (2016). Does the impact of child sexual abuse differ from maltreated but non-sexually abused children? A prospective examination of the impact of child sexual abuse on internalizing and externalizing behavior problems. Child Abuse & Neglect, 51, 31-40.

This study was mainly concerned with comparing the long-term outcomes and consequences of children who experienced sexual abuse before the age of 18 and those who did not. The researchers also explored the affiliation of further behavioral complications with the gender of the victimized child, which makes this study partly relevant to our present research. It deals with a more specific topic; however, the researchers compare findings from groups of children with a history of CSA and without one but who still experienced maltreatment, which is particularly interesting. The result shows a growing trend for sexually abused girls to increase internalizing problems with age, the pattern that does not occur so much with boys.

Lueger-Schuster, B., Knefel, M., Gluck, T. M., Jagsch, R., Kantor, V., & Weindl, D. (2018). Child abuse and neglect in institutional settings, cumulative lifetime traumatization, and psychopathological long-term correlates in adult survivors: The Vienna Institutional Abuse Study. Child Abuse & Neglect, 76, 488–501.

The research tackles an infrequently studied problem of child maltreatment occurring in foster care. In this cohort study, two groups of individuals were compared: one that was raised in foster care, as the study showed, experienced significantly more incidents of CM than the group that was raised in family homes. The researchers conclude that emotional abuse is the most detrimental to one’s mental health out of all known types of child abuse. This is the reason that makes the study particularly valuable for further research in the field.

Milojevich, H. M., Norwalk, K. E., & Sheridan, M. A. (2019). Deprivation and threat, emotion dysregulation, and psychopathology: Concurrent and longitudinal associations. Development and Psychopathology, 31(3), 847–857.

The prime points of focus of this study are the way certain kinds of child maltreatment alter the longitudinal strategies of emotional regulations in then-adults. It “tests a conceptual model that distinguishes deprivation and threat as distinct forms of exposure with different pathways in psychopathology” (Milojevich, 2019). Milojevich is a credible, prolific researcher and a professional scholar with multiple publications in the field. The present study finds the hypothesized link between the deprivation of children at a young age and subsequent avoidance mechanism of emotional regulation later on. Girls were more affected than boys, and White Americans were more frequent to report emotion dysregulation than African-Americans. Although the subject of this particular study is relatively narrow, it still covers all the topics of interest for further research, and therefore, is a valuable source.

Nakayama, M., Hori, H., Itoh, M., Lin, M., Niwa, M., Ino, K., Imai, R., Ogawa, S., Sekiguchi, A., Matsui, M., Kunugi, H., & Kim, Y. (2020). Possible Long-Term Effects of Childhood Maltreatment on Cognitive Function in Adult Women With Posttraumatic Stress Disorder. Frontiers in psychiatry, 11, 344. Web.

The problem that this research is concerned with is how PTSD – resulting from childhood maltreatment, — affects cognition in adults and whether or not this factor acts independently of others. The results showed an interesting dynamic: individuals with a history of CM but did not develop PTSD were not impaired cognitively in any way. While those with PTSD experienced significant failures in quick and long-term memory, learning capabilities, language-related skills, and had problems with attention. Thus, it is established that PTSD acts as an independent factor in promoting cognitive dysfunctions in adults who experienced CM.

Nemeroff, C. B. (2016). Paradise lost: the neurobiological and clinical consequences of child abuse and neglect. Neuron, 89(5), 892-909.

The researcher in this review describes the effects of early maltreatment on neurobiological, endocrine, and various other systems in human biological structure. This study is relatively affiliated with the question of interest for our further research, despite the fact that it covers an entirely different area of complexities that arise consequent to child abuse. Nemeroff, being an experienced psychiatrist, still shows excellent expertise in this paper. A number of various aspects are covered by this research – from Genetics and Neurobiological complications at forming new brain patterns in patients with a history of abuse in their childhood to inadequate response to treatment in patients with depression or anxiety.

Norman R.E., Byambaa M., De R., Butchart A., Scott J., Vos T. (2012). The long-term health consequences of child physical abuse, emotional abuse, and neglect: a systematic review and meta-analysis. PLoS Med, 9, 11. Web.

This comprehensive study is remarkable in its width of subject matter. The researchers are examining a range of outcomes of child maltreatment – spanning from mental health problems to physical health damage, suicidal tendencies, and even inclination towards sexual risky behavior and prevalence of STIs among the studied demographic. The research covers topics not found anywhere else in the chosen references – along with earlier discussed ones, like substance abuse and mental health disorders after early exposure to various types of maltreatment. The results varied in prospective studies versus retrospective, thus providing quite unexpected findings. Many products coincided with the ones from other studies, which proves their legibility. The only thing research does not touch upon is the relationship between gender and race and childhood adversity experiences.

Odhayani, A. A., Watson, W. J., & Watson, L. (2013). Behavioral consequences of child abuse. Canadian Family Physician, 59(8), 831-836.

This article sums up an excessive number of studies that have been done on childhood maltreatment and abuse, additionally revealing the behavioral consequences that follow. The study poses itself as a guide for clinicians to be able to recognize the signs that child exhibits that indicate different forms of maltreatment – physical, emotional, sexual, and neglect. Summing up the findings of various researchers as well as using databases, the study confirms an undeniable influence of maltreatment on the later development and life of a child, affecting nearly every aspect of it.

Papalia, N. L., Luebbers, S., Ogloff, J. R., Cutajar, M., & Mullen, P. E. (2016). The long-term co-occurrence of psychiatric illness and behavioral problems following child sexual abuse. Australian & New Zealand Journal of Psychiatry, 51(6), 604–613. Web.

The present research covers a scarcely-studied topic of co-occurrence of criminal and anti-social behavior and psychiatric disorders in individuals with a history of childhood maltreatment. The hypothesis was confirmed: people who experienced maltreatment were more inclined to indulge in deviant activities, such as crimes, and at the same time, constituted a higher percentage among psychiatrically ill. The study is valuable due to the fact that it covers a niche topic.

Scheuer S., Wiggert N., Brückl T.M., Awaloff Y., Uhr M., Lucae S., Kloiber S., Holsboer F., Ising M., Wilhelm F.H. (2018). Childhood abuse and depression in adulthood: The mediating role of allostatic load. Psychoneuroendocrinology, 94, 134-142.

The study is focused on a concept of allostatic load – a number of physical factors characteristic of physical deterioration or dysfunction; and the way it is mediated by childhood maltreatment. During the process of the research, it became known that sexual and physical abuse were the prime factors for altering the future allostatic load rates for the worse, other types being not so significant. The effects typically showed during young adulthood and middle age, while older subjects were not so inclined to the influence. The study establishes an important connection between physical wealth and traumatic childhood experiences, drawing a straight line – although the results proved not to be obvious.

Sheats, K. J., Irving, S. M., Mercy, J. A., Simon, T. R., Crosby, A. E., Ford, D. C., Merrick, M. T., Annor, F. B., & Morgan, R. E. Debowska, A., & Boduszek, D. (2017). Child abuse and neglect profiles and their psychosocial consequences in a large sample of incarcerated males. Child Abuse & Neglect, 65, 266-277.

The particular problem that this research address is still the one directly related to the main topic of discussion – that is, the way exposure to abuse in early life affects the development of deviancies in an individual later in life. Having said that, what this research does not cover is the link between gender and racial affiliations and rates of child abuse in relation to these social groups. Instead, this study focuses on analyzing the numbers of experienced child abuse among the high-risk population, particularly incarcerated males. Debowska can be considered a trustful source, as her scholarship is concerned with studying violent behavior aimed at children and women. However, it is suitable to say that there are other instances of more relevant research studies on this list that provide a bigger picture of the problem at hand.

Strathearn, L., Giannotti, M., Millis, R., Kisely, S., Najman, J., & Abajobir, A. (2020). Long-term cognitive, psychological, and health outcomes associated with child abuse and neglect. Pediatrics, 146(4), 1-17. Web.

The aim of this article is to analyze cohort data from the Mater-University of Queensland Study of Pregnancy in order to distinguish what maltreatment types produce specific outcomes. The researchers compared the data of 5,200 children from 14 to 21 with a recorded history of abuse. They found that psychological maltreatment, either physical or emotional, had the biggest number of deviances later in life. Sexual abuse resulted in depression, PTSD, and early sexual activity, while emotional abuse “revealed increased odds of psychosis” as well as substance abuse. Other findings include cognitive delays and difficulties in learning new information. In conclusion, the present study does not establish direct causality but finds neurological deviances that are linked to early-life stress.

Taylor J., Bradbury-Jones C., Lazenbatt A. & Soliman F. (2016). Child maltreatment: Pathway to chronic and long-term conditions? Journal of Public Health, 38(3), 426–431. Web.

This paper gives a broad overview of the problem of child maltreatment worldwide while also examining it from a variety of angles. Among them is the economic impact it makes on a single household as well as society, public health effects – both mental and physical. The article also outlines the preventive measures needed to be applied to society in order to provide everyone with an opportunity to maintain better health and to battle the inhumane behavioral instances such as various types of cruelty against children.

Vachon, D. D., Krueger, R. F., Rogosch F. A., & Cicchetti, D. (2015). Different forms of child maltreatment have comparable consequences among children from low-income families. JAMA Psychiatry, 72(11), 1135–1142. Web.

This unique study offers an alternative outlook on the long-term effects of experienced childhood maltreatment. The authors compared their findings in order to identify whether the effect of trauma differed depending on the gender of the victim and the type of maltreatment experienced. Instead, they found that all types of childhood mistreatment have equal outcomes across genders. The researchers also concluded that maltreatment alters two broad behavioral types – internalizing and externalizing ones. In the treatment of childhood adversity consequences, broader therapy styles aimed at preventing long-term neurological changes work better than the ones aimed at the results of a specific type of abuse.

Widom, C. S., Czaja, S., Wilson, H. W., Allwood, M., & Chauhan, P. (2012). Do the Long-Term Consequences of Neglect Differ for Children of Different Races and Ethnic Backgrounds? Child Maltreatment, 18(1), 42–55. Web.

The research paper examines very closely related subjects as most of the studies on this list – consequences spanning into adulthood in individuals with an experience of childhood adversity. The parameters studied include unique features, for example, evaluation of IQ in affected individuals and comparing them in regards to their ethnicity. Other parameters include reading ability, occupation, mental health consequences, and criminal and violent behavior, the results showing exciting differences in IQ rates among Whites, Blacks, and Hispanics. Widom has a unique perspective on the topic as a scholar since her expertise lies in the adjacent field – criminology, but is closely related to the topic of violence, which includes violence against minors. Overall, the study provides detailed information on a variety of mental diagnoses, comparative statistics for mental disorder rates and juvenile activities for the major ethnicity groups, as well as family characteristics that clarify the potential reasons for child maltreatment.

Yampolskaya, S., Chuang, E., & Walker, C. (2019). Trajectories of substance use among child welfare-involved youth: Longitudinal associations with child maltreatment history and emotional/behavior problems. Substance Use & Misuse, 54(3), 437–448.

This study focuses on the link between maltreatment and further substance abuse in the case of adults who experienced it in their childhood. The research also points out the behavioral and emotional factors that majorly contribute to the prospect of substance abuse among youth involved in the child welfare system. This research explores yet another aspect of the consequences of early maltreatment. However, it does not speak of gender and/or racial factors. It draws a strong connection between substance abuse among the individuals who experienced maltreatment, neglect, or other forms of abuse early in life, which is beneficial to the current research. Yampolskaya presents herself as a reliable source, with a long history of research explicitly targeted at child abuse and its complications and consequences. Thus, even though this paper exemplifies another narrower-demographic study, it provides valuable information about substance abuse and child maltreatment, proving beneficial for the research, as this particular aspect has not been covered previously.

Young, J. C., & Widom, C. S. (2014). Long-term effects of child abuse and neglect on emotion processing in adulthood. Child Abuse & Neglect, 38(8), 1369–1381.

Here, the research is focused on emotion processing abilities, the development of various psychopathologies, and the IQ rate in adults, and how these factors are mediated by previously experienced childhood abuse. One notable feature of this research can be the usage of the International Affective Picture System to assess the cohort groups’ quality of emotion recognition. Maltreated adults, as hypothesized, had less accuracy in recognizing emotions; however, unexpected findings include that IQ score was mediating the relationship between maltreatment and emotion processing.

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Milojevich, H. M., Norwalk, K. E., & Sheridan, M. A. (2019). Deprivation and threat, emotion dysregulation, and psychopathology: Concurrent and longitudinal associations. Development and Psychopathology, 31(3), 847–857. Web.

Nakayama, M., Hori, H., Itoh, M., Lin, M., Niwa, M., Ino, K., Imai, R., Ogawa, S., Sekiguchi, A., Matsui, M., Kunugi, H., & Kim, Y. (2020). Possible Long-Term Effects of Childhood Maltreatment on Cognitive Function in Adult Women With Posttraumatic Stress Disorder. Frontiers in psychiatry, 11, 344. Web.

Nemeroff, C. B. (2016). Paradise lost: The neurobiological and clinical consequences of child abuse and neglect. Neuron, 89(5), 892-909. Web.

Norman R.E., Byambaa M., De R., Butchart A., Scott J., Vos T. (2012). The long-term health consequences of child physical abuse, emotional abuse, and neglect: A systematic review and meta-analysis. PLoS Med, 9, 11. Web.

Odhayani, A. A., Watson, W. J., & Watson, L. (2013). Behavioral consequences of child abuse. Canadian Family Physician, 59(8), 831-836.

Papalia, N. L., Luebbers, S., Ogloff, J. R., Cutajar, M., & Mullen, P. E. (2016). The long-term co-occurrence of psychiatric illness and behavioral problems following child sexual abuse. Australian & New Zealand Journal of Psychiatry, 51(6), 604–613. Web.

Scheuer S, Wiggert N, Brückl TM, Awaloff Y, Uhr M, Lucae S, Kloiber S, Holsboer F, Ising M, Wilhelm FH. (2018) Childhood abuse and depression in adulthood: The mediating role of allostatic load. Psychoneuroendocrinology. 94, 134-142.

Sheats, K. J., Irving, S. M., Mercy, J. A., Simon, T. R., Crosby, A. E., Ford, D. C., Merrick, M. T., Annor, F. B., Morgan, R. E. Debowska, A., & Boduszek, D. (2017). Child abuse and neglect profiles and their psychosocial consequences in a large sample of incarcerated males. Child Abuse & Neglect, 65, 266-277. Web.

Strathearn, L., Giannotti, M., Millis, R., Kisely, S., Najman, J., & Abajobir, A. (2020). Long-term cognitive, psychological, and health outcomes associated with child abuse and neglect. Pediatrics, 146(4), 1-17. Web.

Taylor J., Bradbury-Jones C., Lazenbatt A. & Soliman F. (2016). Child maltreatment: Pathway to chronic and long-term conditions? Journal of Public Health, 38(3), 426–431. Web.

Vachon, D. D., Krueger, R. F., Rogosch F. A., & Cicchetti, D. (2015). Different forms of child maltreatment have comparable consequences among children from low-income families. JAMA Psychiatry, 72(11), 1135–1142. Web.

Widom, C. S., Czaja, S., Wilson, H. W., Allwood, M., & Chauhan, P. (2012). Do the long-term consequences of neglect differ for children of different races and ethnic backgrounds? Child Maltreatment, 18(1), 42–55. Web.

Yampolskaya, S., Chuang, E., & Walker, C. (2019). Trajectories of substance use among child welfare-involved youth: Longitudinal associations with child maltreatment history and emotional/behavior problems. Substance Use & Misuse, 54(3), 437–448. Web.

Young, J. C., & Widom, C. S. (2014). Long-term effects of child abuse and neglect on emotion processing in adulthood. Child Abuse & Neglect, 38(8), 1369–1381. Web.

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PsychologyWriting. 2022. "Experience of Childhood Trauma from Child Abuse/Maltreatment." September 28, 2022. https://psychologywriting.com/experience-of-childhood-trauma-from-child-abuse-maltreatment/.

1. PsychologyWriting. "Experience of Childhood Trauma from Child Abuse/Maltreatment." September 28, 2022. https://psychologywriting.com/experience-of-childhood-trauma-from-child-abuse-maltreatment/.


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