MONDAY, Nov. 22 (HealthDay News) -- Women who were sexually or
physically abused as children are at increased risk for drinking
problems, researchers say.
In the study, researchers analyzed data from almost 3,700 women
who took part in the 2005 U.S. National Alcohol Survey. The
investigators found that women who reported that they had been
sexually abused as children were more likely to also report that
they drank four or more alcoholic drinks daily, that they were
alcohol dependent, and that they drank in a way that could pose
serious threats to their health.
The findings show "a strong association between having a history
of child abuse and problems with alcohol abuse," lead author E.
Anne Lown, a scientist with the Alcohol Research Group in
Emeryville, Calif., said in a Center for Advancing Health news
"The take-home message is across a range of alcohol consumption
patterns, child abuse is consistently associated with alcohol
abuse. All of my measures found that association," she added.
The results of the study were released online Nov. 17 in advance
of publication in the February print issue of the journal
Alcoholism: Clinical & Experimental Research.
"We, as a society, have to take responsibility for the healing
of children and adults with a history of child abuse," Lown said.
"We need to screen for abuse in all settings -- not just screen for
but have interventions in place that will address the long-term
consequences of child abuse. Without screening, the problem will
not be recognized."
The American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry has more
child sexual abuse.