Adverse Childhood Experiences

Our childhood, our upbringing, affects us throughout our lives. Our health as adults – physical and mental – is determined by many factors, not least the things we were exposed to and experienced as children. 

Children the world over are currently experiencing trauma and adversity that impacts upon their health, psychological and emotional wellbeing, now and in the future.

Many adults have experienced traumatic childhoods and gone on to have happy, healthy lives. And many have not. 

This module explores the effects of childhood trauma and adverse experience. Once you have completed it you should be able to:

  • Appreciate that what happens in childhood makes a difference to a child’s mental and physical health, impacting on the rest of their life
  • Describe ‘Adverse Childhood Experiences’ (ACEs) as a framework for understanding childhood trauma
  • Appreciate the long-term physical and psychological consequences of exposure to childhood trauma
  • Recognise common responses to trauma, including hypervigilance, dissociation, disconnection, and shame
  • Start to think about how to routinely and sensitively enquire about a history of trauma and adverse experience
  • Understand and begin to incorporate trauma-informed care into your personal practise
  • Think about yourself and the impact that caring can have