What Are ACEs?
Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACEs) are instances of abuse, neglect or household dysfunction that happen to us as children. Too many negative experiences as children can impact our lives as adults in many different ways. ACEs can have lasting negative effects on our health, behaviors and life potential. A local coalition of Butte County agencies and organizations has created this web page to help build public awareness and education about ACES. To connect with this coalition, please contact Anna Bauer at ABauer@buttecounty.net.
To participate in a brief anonymous survey about ACES awareness, please click this link: https://csuchicobss.co1.qualtrics.com/jfe/form/SV_243mxmLtKtYocwR
In 1998, the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) reported on the ACEs study- the largest study to ever look at the link between childhood trauma and adult health problems. The “ACEs” study looked at 10 types of childhood trauma:
6. Substance abuse in the family
8. Poorly treated mental illness in family
9. Domestic Violence
10. Imprisoned household member
The ACEs study linked these childhood experiences to a higher risk of problems, including:
And many more
The study found that the more adverse childhood experience an individual experienced, the more likely they were to suffer from health and behavioral problems including addiction. Adults who had 4 or more adverse childhood experiences were 3 times more likely to engage in binge drinking behaviors and 4 times more likely to be diagnosed with Alzheimer’s or dementia than those who did not experience any adverse childhood experiences.
ACEs in California and Butte County
In a 2013 phone survey, 61.7% of Californians reported experiencing one or more Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACEs) before age 18 and 16.7 percent reported experiencing 4 or more ACEs before age 18.
Californians have higher rates of ACEs, than most other states. Furthermore, Butte County residents have the highest number of ACEs in California. Among the the Butte County residents surveyed in 2013, 76.5% reported experiencing one or more Adverse Childhood Experiences before age 18.
What’s Your Story?
Are you thinking about your own life history and the experiences you’ve had? If trauma is part of your past, acknowledging it and addressing it can help improve your health and well-being.
Our brain can adapt and heal, at any age, from the effects of Adverse Childhood Experiences. What are the strengths you have that have helped you get through tough times? What can you do to help retrain your brain?
Retrain Your Brain
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