What Are Adverse Childhood Experiences?
Traumatic childhood events such as abuse, neglect, and witnessing experiences like crime, parental conflict, mental illness, and substance abuse can result in long-term negative effects on learning, behavior and health. Often referred to as adverse childhood experiences (ACEs), these types of events create dangerous levels of stress that can derail healthy brain development, and increase risk for smoking, alcoholism, depression, heart disease, and dozens of other illnesses and unhealthy behaviors throughout life.
As more is learned about the causes and effects of adverse childhood experiences, new efforts are emerging nationwide to advance policies and environments that help families raise healthy children and increase resilience. This collection contains resources for policymakers, practitioners, and communities working to raise awareness about and mitigate the impact of adverse chiildhood experiences, and help every child have a healthy start in life.