Early adversity and health outcomes in young adulthood: the role of ongoing stress

Raposa, Elizabeth B., Hammen, Constance L., Brennan, Patricia A., O'Callaghan, Frances and Najman, Jake M. (2014) Early adversity and health outcomes in young adulthood: the role of ongoing stress. Health Psychology, 33 5: 410-418. doi:10.1037/a0032752

Author Raposa, Elizabeth B.
Hammen, Constance L.
Brennan, Patricia A.
O'Callaghan, Frances
Najman, Jake M.
Title Early adversity and health outcomes in young adulthood: the role of ongoing stress
Journal name Health Psychology   Check publisher's open access policy
ISSN 0278-6133
Publication date 2014-05-01
Year available 2014
Sub-type Article (original research)
DOI 10.1037/a0032752
Open Access Status Not yet assessed
Volume 33
Issue 5
Start page 410
End page 418
Total pages 9
Place of publication Washington, DC United States
Publisher American Psychological Association
Language eng
Subject 2738 Psychiatry and Mental health
3202 Applied Psychology
2700 Medicine
Abstract Objective: The current study examined the prospective effects of exposure to stressful conditions in early childhood on physical health in young adulthood, and explored continuing exposure to stressors, as well as depression, in adolescence as possible mechanisms of this relationship. Method: A prospective longitudinal design was used to examine 705 mother–child pairs from a community-based sample, followed from offspring birth through age 20 years. Mothers provided contemporaneous assessments of early adverse conditions from offspring birth through age 5. Offspring responses to the UCLA Life Stress Interview, Structured Clinical Interview for DSM Disorders, Physical Functioning subscale of the SF-36 Health Survey, and questions about the presence of chronic disease were used to assess youth stress at age 15, depression from ages 15–20, and physical health at age 20. Results: Early adversity conferred risk for elevated levels of social and nonsocial stress at youth age 15, as well as depression between ages 15 and 20. Social and nonsocial stress, in turn, had effects on physical health at age 20, directly and indirectly via depression. Conclusion: Findings suggest that early adverse conditions have lasting implications for physical health, and that continued exposure to increased levels of both social and nonsocial stress in adolescence, as well as the presence of depression, might be important mechanisms by which early adversity impacts later physical health.
Keyword Early adversity
Community sample
Childhood physical abuse
Mental health
Intergenerational transmission
Household dysfunction
Alcohol consumption
Survey Sf-36
Q-Index Code C1
Q-Index Status Confirmed Code
Grant ID R01 MH52239
Institutional Status UQ

Document type: Journal Article
Sub-type: Article (original research)
Collections: Official 2015 Collection
School of Public Health Publications
Version Filter Type
Citation counts: TR Web of Science Citation Count  Cited 16 times in Thomson Reuters Web of Science Article | Citations
Scopus Citation Count Cited 20 times in Scopus Article | Citations
Google Scholar Search Google Scholar
Created: Sun, 01 Jun 2014, 10:15:17 EST by System User on behalf of School of Public Health