The ACES are important to the health of our community. Researchers have found that the more ACES someone experiences, the more likely they are to have both physical and behavioral health concerns. This means that what happened to someone as a child can have a lot to do with their health throughout their whole life!
The good news is that the ACES are all preventable social conditions that can be addressed by supporting healthy individuals & families, healthy schools, and community efforts to reduce social problems. Raising awareness and helping people connect to what they need can decrease the likelihood of ACES across generations – creating a healthier community for us all.
Does the ACE Score Predict the Future?
This is a tough question. While research has shown that the ACES predict health outcomes when we study large groups, each individual has their own story to tell. A person may have experienced something traumatic that is not defined as part of the ACES, like a housefire, a difficult death of a grandparent, or bullying, or they may have experienced trauma as an adult. Likewise, someone may have experienced many of the ACES and had the resilience and supports to overcome these.
It is important that when we ask “What Happened to You” we hear this story through the uniqueness of each individual. We also know that people often overcome trauma, and there is every reason to keep hope, even in the darkest of situations.
What's Your ACE Score?
Find out using this questionnaire.
LEARN A LITTLE MORE
ACES fall into three categories: abuse, neglect, or household dysfunction.
WHAT ARE ACES?
ACES PRIMER VIDEO
TEDTALK: HOW CHILDHOOD TRAUMA AFFECTS HEALTH ACROSS A LIFETIME
WE CAN PREVENT ACES
The Impact of Childhood Trauma
Childhood experiences, both positive and negative, have a tremendous impact on future violence victimization and perpetration, and lifelong health and opportunity. As such, early experiences are an important public health issue. Much of the foundational research in this area has been referred to as Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACEs).
Studies on Adverse Childhood ACEs are strongly related to the development and prevalence of a wide range of health problems throughout a person’s lifespan, including those associated with substance misuse.