Barile, J. P., Ford, D. C., Scarbrough, S., Smith, A. R., Thompson, W. W., & Merrick, M. T.
Society for Community Research and Action 2015 Biennial Conference: Celebrating 50 Years of Community Psychology: Bridging Past and Future, Lowell, M.A.
Publication year: 2015

Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACEs) such as childhood maltreatment and negative household environments have been repeatedly associated with poor physical and mental health. Previous studies have determined that ACEs are associated with depression (Anda et al., 2002; Chapman et al., 2004; Edwards, Holden, Felitti, & Anda, 2003), suicidality (Johnson et al., 2002), poorer overall mental health (Anda et al., 2002; Draper et al., 2008; Edwards et al., 2003; Wainwright & Surtees, 2002). Physical health problems associated with ACEs include ischemic heart disease (Dong, Giles, et al., 2004), chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (Anda et al., 2008), immune disorders (Dube et al., 2009), and mortality (Brown et al., 2009). This study will provide a review of the previous literature regarding measurement of ACEs, determine the strength of the associations between ACEs, emotional support, and health-related quality of life (HRQOL), and determine the strength by which the associations between ACEs and HRQOL are mediated by individuals’ ability to garner emotional support in adulthood. Utilizing data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s (CDC) Behavioral Risk Factors Surveillance System (BRFSS) from five states, our findings suggest that ACEs both directly and indirectly (via emotional support) impact individuals’ HRQOL in adulthood. The review will include an examination of the methods used to assess histories of ACEs, their measurement structure, and identify current gaps in research and practice.