By Per Kristiansson, EurekAlert!, January 21, 2021
An adverse upbringing often impairs people's circumstances and health in their adult years, especially for couples who have both had similar experiences. This is shown by a new study, carried out by Uppsala University researchers, in which 818 mothers and their partners filled in a questionnaire one year after having a child together. The study is now published in the scientific journal PLOS ONE.
"When we studied couples where both partners stated they'd had a hard time as children, the connection between negative childhood experience and a relatively unfavourable living situation in adulthood became especially clear," says Per Kristiansson, a specialist doctor in general medicine, senior lecturer at Uppsala University's Department of Public Health and Caring Sciences and the study's principal author.
Adverse childhood experiences (ACEs) have serious lifelong repercussions. Previous international studies (eg Felitti et al 1998, Hughes et al 2017, Merrick et al 2018) have shown that they entail a greater risk of falling ill, and of dying prematurely, from a range of common diseases and conditions. These include severe mental ill-health, cancer, cardiovascular disease and diabetes. The more numerous the ACEs, the higher the risk of negative consequences.