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Childhood sexual abuse has been found to be associated with increased PTSD symptoms.
Widom (1999) found that child sexual abuse independently predicts the number of symptoms for PTSD a person displays. 37.5% of their sexually abused subjects, 32.7% of their physically abused subjects, and 20.4% of their control group met the criteria for a diagnosis of PTSD.The authors concluded, "Victims of child abuse (sexual and physical) and neglect are at increased risk for developing PTSD, but childhood victimization is not a sufficient condition. Family, individual, and lifestyle variables also place individuals at risk and contribute to the symptoms of PTSD." Mullen and Fleming, argue that, "in most cases, the fundamental damage inflicted by child sexual abuse is due to the child's developing capacities for trust, intimacy, agency and sexuality, and that many of the mental health problems of adult life associated with histories of child sexual abuse are second-order effects."
- ↑ Widom C.S. (1999). "Posttraumatic stress disorder in abused and neglected children grown up," American Journal of Psychiatry; 156(8):1223-1229.
- ↑ Mullen, P. & Fleming, J. (1998). "Long-term effects of child sexual abuse," Issues in child abuse prevention (9). Australia: National Child Protection Clearing House.
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