Cost of Adverse Childhood Experiences in Arizona

For more than 20 years, researchers and public health officials have studied the impact of adversity on the growth and development of children. Two decades of research has shown that early childhood adversity can increase the risk of experiencing negative health outcomes later in life.

Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACEs) are traumatic events such as abuse, neglect, and household dysfunction that occur during childhood (before age 18).

A seminal study conducted in 1998 found a direct link between the number of ACEs someone experienced and their risk for chronic diseases later in life. Arguably the most surprising and influential finding was that the more ACEs a person experienced, the more likely they were to have a chronic health conditions like heart disease, cancer, chronic bronchitis/COPD, and diabetes.

The association between high levels of childhood adversity and chronic health conditions is significant. The chronic health conditions listed above are not only the leading causes of death in adults, but also some of the most costly health conditions to treat.