Occupational Therapist, Sibling, Speaker

Expanding The ACE Study

Black and white photo of a woman crying

For those that don’t know what the ACE or Adverse Childhood Experiences study is, here is the link to the CDC website for more details.

I have written about siblings and mental health in previous posts. I was discussing with a colleague of mine about how great the ACE study was as far as research goes but now what? The 10 questions is somewhat limited. My colleague grew up in a military family and sometimes children have maladaptive tendencies due to the parent being deployed or no living in one place for very long. I was discussing the siblings or brothers/sisters that have a sibling with a disability. We tend to be neglected due to the needs of the sibling that needs extra care and attention. I continue to meet people that live in a constant state of stress (drama, anxiety, etc) because that is the only way they know how to function. Most of us sibs are in therapy.

“The ACE Pyramid represents the conceptual framework for the ACE Study. The ACE Study has uncovered how ACEs are strongly related to development of risk factors for disease, and well-being throughout the life course.” Source-https://www.cdc.gov/violenceprevention/aces/about.html

My personal ACE score is pretty high considering from the outside, everything looked normal. This would explain the mental breakdown at 22 and having to take time off of school. I graduated a year after my cohorts. It was a very dark place and I was barely functioning. I was able to pull myself together without professional help. Therapy was still pretty taboo but honestly didn’t know that was even a choice. In school, mental health services were for people with a severe mental illness. I was lucky. Others are not.

Here is the questionnaire for your ACE score. Do you know what your ACE score? Take the quiz and find out.

I now have this questionnaire in my intake packets as an OT. I was just discussing on a professional page about ADHD is often a symptom and not just a diagnosis. Trauma included. I always said in occupational therapy school that I will never work in mental health. If you work with people, you work in mental health.

What will you do with this information? Are you a clinician that works in trauma? Let’s connect.

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