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General Health and Wellbeing

The following is a summary of the systematic review findings up to the date of our most recent literature search. If you have a specific clinical case, we strongly recommend you read all of the relevant references as cited and look for additional material published outside our search dates.

Four studies evaluated the impact of neglect or emotional maltreatment on the impact of general health and wellbeing; one of which was comparative 4 and three were non-comparative 1-3


A different tool was used for each study


  • Two studies found an association between neglect and general health and well-being measures 2,4.  A further two studies found no association between neglect and general health and well-being 1,3
  • One study found that the neglected adolescents had higher levels of daily stress than the non-maltreated controls 4
  • Another study found that neglect was significantly associated with low positive social and achievement expectations 2
  • Two studies exploring emotional maltreatment and general health and well-being had conflicting results 1,2
  • One study found that psychological abuse was significantly associated with negative social expectations 2
  • One study exploring 29 emotionally abused adolescents found no association with general health and well-being 1


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  1. Kools S, Paul SM, Norbeck JS, Robbins NR. Dimensions of health in young people in foster care. International Journal of Adolescent Medicine and Health. 2009;21(2):221-233 [Pubmed]

  2. Thompson R, Proctor LJ, English DJ, Dubowitz H, Narasimhan S, Everson MD. Suicidal ideation in adolescence: examining the role of recent adverse experiences. Journal of Adolescence. 2012;35(1):175-186 [Pubmed]

  3. Tyler KA, Johnson KA, Brownridge DA. A longitudinal study of the effects of child maltreatment on later outcomes among high-risk adolescents. Journal of Youth and Adolescence. 2008;37(5):506-521 [Abstract available from Springer Link]

  4. Williamson JM, Borduin CM, Howe BA. The ecology of adolescent maltreatment: a multilevel examination of adolescent physical abuse, sexual abuse, and neglect. Journal of Consulting and Clinical Psychology. 1991;59(3):449-457 [Pubmed]


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