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Study: Female Child Abuse Survivors Face Premature Mortality

by John Gomez | Last Updated: September 6, 2016
Child Abuse Survivors

In recent years, we have learned a lot about child abuse survivors.  One of those lessons is that survivors of abuse tend to pay a price as adults.  Child abuse survivors can face particular struggles with regards to mental health.  According to a recent study, female child abuse survivors could face a greater risk than others of early mortality.  The study is generating quite a bit of discussion in certain circles.  The child abuse lawyers at Gomez Trial Attorneys would like to make sure that as many people know about this study as possible.  The more people are aware of the consequences of child abuse, the more people will hopefully take action against it when they suspect that it’s occurring.

About the Child Abuse Survivors Study

The study appeared in the August 17 issue of JAMA Psychiatry.  Those interested in the abstract can find it here.  Edith Chen of Northwestern University was the lead researcher.  The researchers reviewed and tracked records relating to 6,285 adults.  Their baseline psychological data were collected in 1995 and 1996.  2,987 of those tracked were men.  These subjects had self-reported one of three forms of mistreatment while children:

  • Emotional abuse
  • Moderate physical abuse
  • Severe physical abuse

The researchers tracked the mortality rate of these subjects as of October of 2015.  Their source was the National Death Index.

The study found the following in terms of increased risk of death during this 20-year period:

  • Women who endured emotional abuse as children – 22 percent more likely to face early mortality
  • Females who suffered moderate physical abuse – 30 percent more likely to lose their lives early
  • Female subjects who suffered severe physical abuse – 58 percent more likely to have died before 2015

The researchers did not find any statistical correlation between men who had identified as child abuse survivors and early mortality.

More Statistics Regarding Child Abuse

Now that we are continuing to potentially tie consequences later in life to child abuse, it may be necessary to review the statistics regarding child abuse so we can understand just how prevalent this problem has become.  A 2014 report on Child Mistreatment revealed the following data regarding child abuse in the United States:

  • More than 700,000 children were victims of child abuse in some form that year.
  • More than 400,000 of these children received some form of post-report services.
  • Nearly 150,000 children were placed in foster care after these allegations of child abuse were investigated.
  • Nearly 1,500 children die as a result of abuse every year in the United States.

The problem may even be much worse than the data indicate.  Some estimates state that for every report of child abuse that’s made, three are never reported to any sort of agency.

How a Children’s Rights Attorney Can Help

A person could or even should take several steps if he or she suspects the presence of child abuse.  People who encounter this suspicion need to act on their instincts and deal with the situation before severe long-term harm is inflicted on that child.  If your child has been mistreated, you can contact a children’s rights attorney at Gomez Trial Attorneys for a free case evaluation.

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