Associations of adverse and positive childhood experiences with adult physical and mental health and risk behaviours in Slovenia
ID Kuhar, Metka (Author), ID Zager Kocjan, Gaja (Author)

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Background: Many studies demonstrated the relationship between adverse childhood experiences (ACEs) and diminished health functioning in adulthood. A growing literature has shown that positive childhood experiences (PCEs) co-occurring with ACEs reduce the risks for negative outcomes.Objective: The aim was to investigate how ACEs and PCEs are simultaneously associated with health outcomes in adulthood, including self-rated health, physical and mental health outcomes, and health-risk behaviours. Methods: A panel sample of 4,847 Slovenian adults was used and the data were weighted to closely resemble the Slovenian population. A series of logistic regression analyses were performed to examine how ACEs and PCEs predict the risk of various health outcomes.Results: Significant associations, as measured by adjusted odds ratios, were found between higher ACEs exposure and each of the 16 health outcomes evaluated. Adjusting for above median PCEs attenuated the association between ACEs and 6 health outcomes (poor self-rated physical and mental health, depression, anxiety, suicide attempt, physical inactivity; OR for ▫$\ge$▫ 4 vs. 0 ACEs, 1.48-9.34). Mirroring these findings, above median PCEs were associated with lowered odds of these 6 health outcomes after adjusting for ACEs (OR for above vs. below median PCEs, 0.46-0.67), but not with odds of physical health outcomes and most of the health-risk behaviours. Stratified analyses by ACEs exposure level showed that the association between PCEs and self-rated health remained stable across ACEs exposure levels, while the association between PCEs and mental health outcomes and physical inactivity varied across ACEs exposure levels. Conclusions: Our results suggest that above median PCEs attenuate the association between ACEs and poor self-rated health, mental health problems, and physical inactivity in later life, and are negatively associated with these health problems even in the concurrent presence of ACEs. Interventions to promote PCEs can help to reduce unfavourable long-term health outcomes following childhood adversity.

Keywords:childhood, adverse childhood experiences, early experience, physical health, mental health, risk taking, adverse childhood experiences, positive childhood experiences, health-risk behaviours, Resilience questionnaire RQ, International trauma questionnaire ITQ, Adverse childhood experiences study, Behavioral risk factor surveillance system BRFSS, Adverse childhood experiences international questionnaire ACE-IQ
Typology:1.01 - Original Scientific Article
Organization:FF - Faculty of Arts
Publication status:Published
Publication version:Version of Record
Number of pages:15 str.
Numbering:Vol. 12, no. 1
PID:20.500.12556/RUL-128622 This link opens in a new window
ISSN on article:2000-8066
DOI:10.1080/20008198.2021.1924953 This link opens in a new window
COBISS.SI-ID:69268483 This link opens in a new window
Publication date in RUL:21.07.2021
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Record is a part of a journal

Title:European journal of psychotraumatology
Publisher:ǂThe ǂEuropean Society for Traumatic Stress Studies
COBISS.SI-ID:518599961 This link opens in a new window


License:CC BY-NC 4.0, Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International
Description:A creative commons license that bans commercial use, but the users don’t have to license their derivative works on the same terms.
Licensing start date:30.06.2021

Secondary language

Keywords:obremenjujoče izkušnje iz otroštva OIO, zgodnje izkušnje, telesno zdravje, duševno zdravje, tvegano vedenje, obremenjujoče izkušnje v otroštvu, pozitivne izkušnje v otroštvu, nezdrava vedenja

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