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Home Industry News Mental health risk for children of fighting parents

Mental health risk for children of fighting parents

28th May 2009

Health experts have claimed people with parents who were violent to each other are more likely to develop mental health problems later in life.

New research published in the Journal of Epidemiology and Community Health looked at what impact violence had on people as children by observing their mental health outcomes in adulthood.

For their study, researchers interviewed over 3,000 adults in Paris in 2005 and measured current depression and lifetime suicide attempts, intimate partner violence, violence against children and alcohol dependence.

Among those questioned, 16 per cent said they had witnessed inter-parental violence before the age of 18 and this was far more common in certain situations.

For example, it was up to eight times more likely in cases where parents had been alcoholics.

The study also found witnessing violence was more common in families with financial problems, serious parental diseases, housing problems or unemployment.

At the end of their research, the authors found people who were exposed to inter-parental violence had a 1.4 times higher risk of having depression, were more than three times more likely to be involved in conjugal violence and were almost five times more likely to mistreat their own child.

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