Negative effects of child abuse can occur not only in childhood but also in adulthood. At this point, it is important to distinguish short-run and long-run effects of child abuse. Adults who had been maltreated as children were twice as likely to suffer major depression and chronic inflammation. Children who grew up poor or socially isolated were twice as likely to show metabolic risk markers at age 32 (Grohol, 2009). After accounting for women’s age and education, women who were sexually abused as children faced health care costs 16 percent higher than non-abused women, while physically abused women’s costs were 22 percent higher. For women who suffered both types of abuse, costs rose 36 percent above average (Nauert, 2008).
In such a way, negative effects of child abuse may have multiple manifestations. However, the problem is that many children do not receive any help to cope with child abuse and its negative effects. Instead, they are left on their own, face to face with their problems and abusers. Hence, negative effects of child abuse aggravate increasing the risk of the development of serious health problems in the future.
Appropriate health promotion/disease prevention theoretical framework
Each factor causing health problems in patients, who have suffered child abuse, has to be addressed to help patients to recover after traumas and injuries they have received. In fact, health care professionals working with children suffering child abuse should be aware of factors that affect their patients and provoke child abuse. The identification of risk factors can help to elaborate an effective strategy of the prevention of child abuse, while children can learn what to do or not to do to avoid child abuse and its negative effects.
The elimination of causes of child abuse and its negative consequences is essential for the patients’ recovery and minimization of negative effects of child abuse and its effects on their health. In fact, the revelation of causes of child abuse is crucial for the further successful prevention of child abuse and treatment of children. The identification of causes of child abuse and their elimination can help children to overcome negative effects of child abuse and to create positive environment, free of causes that aggravate the condition of patients.
The health promotion and disease prevention should include mutual efforts of health care professionals, families and social workers. If necessary, children should be taken from their families, if their parents are abusive. The close cooperation between health care professionals, social workers, communities and family members contributes to the development of effective approaches to the treatment of patients, who have suffered child abuse.