Childhood Trauma Facts and Statistics

  • At least 1 in 7 children have experienced child abuse and/or neglect in the past year, and this is likely an underestimate.
  • In 2019, 1,840 children died of abuse and neglect in the United States. Each day, more than 1,000 youth are treated in emergency departments for physical assault-related injuries.
  • 60% of adults report experiencing abuse or other difficult family circumstances during
  • 26% of children in the United States will witness or experience a traumatic event before they turn four.
  • 4 of every 10 children in American say they experienced a physical assault during the past year, with 1 in 10 receiving an assault-related injury.
  • Young children exposed to five or more significant adverse experiences in the first three years of childhood face a 76% likelihood of having one or more delays in their language, emotional or brain development.
  • As the number of traumatic events experienced during childhood increases, the risk for the following health problems in adulthood increases: depression; alcoholism; drug abuse; suicide attempts; heart and liver diseases; pregnancy problems; high stress; uncontrollable anger; and family, financial, and job problems.
  • People who have experienced trauma are: 15 times more likely to attempt suicide, 4 times more likely to become an alcoholic, 4 times more likely to develop a sexually transmitted disease, 4 times more likely to inject drugs, 3 times more likely to use antidepressant medication, 3 times more likely to be absent from work, 3 times more likely to experience depression, 3 times more likely to have serious job problems, 2.5 times more likely to smoke, 2 times more likely to develop chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, and 2 times more likely to have a serious financial problem.
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