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Associations of adverse childhood experiences and suicidal behaviors in adulthood in a U.S. nationally representative sample.
Child Care Health Dev. 2019 01; 45(1):121-128.CC

Abstract

BACKGROUND

Suicide is a leading cause of death among adolescents and young adults. The current study extends the research linking adverse childhood experiences (ACEs) to suicidal behaviors by testing these associations using a nationally representative sample, assessing for suicide ideation and attempts in adulthood, controlling for established risk factors for suicidality, and measuring a broad array of ACEs.

METHODS

The sample included 9,421 participants from the National Longitudinal Study of Adolescent Health who participated in four waves of assessments spanning 13 years. We examined longitudinal associations between eight different ACEs (physical, sexual, and emotional abuse, neglect, parental death, incarceration, alcoholism, and family suicidality) with suicidal ideation and suicide attempts in adulthood, while controlling for depression, problem alcohol use, drug use, delinquency, impulsivity, gender, race, age, and urbanicity. We also tested for cumulative associations of ACEs with suicide ideation and attempts.

RESULTS

Logistic regression analyses indicated that physical, sexual, and emotional abuse, parental incarceration, and family history of suicidality each increased the risk by 1.4 to 2.7 times for suicidal ideation and suicide attempts in adulthood. The accumulation of ACEs increased the odds of suicide ideation and attempts. Compared with those with no ACEs, the odds of seriously considering suicide or attempting suicide in adulthood increased more than threefold among those with three or more ACEs.

CONCLUSIONS

Intervention strategies need to prevent ACEs from occurring and, if they do occur, should take into account the impact of cumulative ACEs on suicide risk. Future research should focus on identifying mediating mechanisms for the ACEs-suicidality association using longitudinal research designs and determine which ACEs are most important to include in a cumulative ACE measure.

Authors+Show Affiliations

Department of Youth, Family, and Community Studies, Clemson University, Clemson, South Carolina.Department of Public Health Sciences, Clemson University, Clemson, South Carolina.Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences, Emory University School of Medicine/Grady Health System, Atlanta, Georgia.

Pub Type(s)

Journal Article
Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural

Language

eng

PubMed ID

30175459

Citation

Thompson, Martie P., et al. "Associations of Adverse Childhood Experiences and Suicidal Behaviors in Adulthood in a U.S. Nationally Representative Sample." Child: Care, Health and Development, vol. 45, no. 1, 2019, pp. 121-128.
Thompson MP, Kingree JB, Lamis D. Associations of adverse childhood experiences and suicidal behaviors in adulthood in a U.S. nationally representative sample. Child Care Health Dev. 2019;45(1):121-128.
Thompson, M. P., Kingree, J. B., & Lamis, D. (2019). Associations of adverse childhood experiences and suicidal behaviors in adulthood in a U.S. nationally representative sample. Child: Care, Health and Development, 45(1), 121-128. https://doi.org/10.1111/cch.12617
Thompson MP, Kingree JB, Lamis D. Associations of Adverse Childhood Experiences and Suicidal Behaviors in Adulthood in a U.S. Nationally Representative Sample. Child Care Health Dev. 2019;45(1):121-128. PubMed PMID: 30175459.
* Article titles in AMA citation format should be in sentence-case
TY - JOUR T1 - Associations of adverse childhood experiences and suicidal behaviors in adulthood in a U.S. nationally representative sample. AU - Thompson,Martie P, AU - Kingree,J B, AU - Lamis,Dorian, Y1 - 2018/09/02/ PY - 2018/03/15/received PY - 2018/07/27/revised PY - 2018/08/12/accepted PY - 2018/9/4/pubmed PY - 2019/12/19/medline PY - 2018/9/4/entrez KW - adverse childhood experiences KW - child trauma KW - suicidal behavior KW - suicide SP - 121 EP - 128 JF - Child: care, health and development JO - Child Care Health Dev VL - 45 IS - 1 N2 - BACKGROUND: Suicide is a leading cause of death among adolescents and young adults. The current study extends the research linking adverse childhood experiences (ACEs) to suicidal behaviors by testing these associations using a nationally representative sample, assessing for suicide ideation and attempts in adulthood, controlling for established risk factors for suicidality, and measuring a broad array of ACEs. METHODS: The sample included 9,421 participants from the National Longitudinal Study of Adolescent Health who participated in four waves of assessments spanning 13 years. We examined longitudinal associations between eight different ACEs (physical, sexual, and emotional abuse, neglect, parental death, incarceration, alcoholism, and family suicidality) with suicidal ideation and suicide attempts in adulthood, while controlling for depression, problem alcohol use, drug use, delinquency, impulsivity, gender, race, age, and urbanicity. We also tested for cumulative associations of ACEs with suicide ideation and attempts. RESULTS: Logistic regression analyses indicated that physical, sexual, and emotional abuse, parental incarceration, and family history of suicidality each increased the risk by 1.4 to 2.7 times for suicidal ideation and suicide attempts in adulthood. The accumulation of ACEs increased the odds of suicide ideation and attempts. Compared with those with no ACEs, the odds of seriously considering suicide or attempting suicide in adulthood increased more than threefold among those with three or more ACEs. CONCLUSIONS: Intervention strategies need to prevent ACEs from occurring and, if they do occur, should take into account the impact of cumulative ACEs on suicide risk. Future research should focus on identifying mediating mechanisms for the ACEs-suicidality association using longitudinal research designs and determine which ACEs are most important to include in a cumulative ACE measure. SN - 1365-2214 UR - https://www.unboundmedicine.com/medline/citation/30175459/Associations_of_adverse_childhood_experiences_and_suicidal_behaviors_in_adulthood_in_a_U_S__nationally_representative_sample_ DB - PRIME DP - Unbound Medicine ER -