The ACE Study was developed in 1998 by Dr. Robert F. Anda of the Centers for Disease Control in Atlanta, Ga. and Dr. Vincent J. Felitti with Kaiser Permanente in San Diego, Ca. Their research, which is ongoing, used the simple test below to determine whether a variety of childhood traumas (or stress) could have a negative effect on physical and mental health later in life. Anda and Felitti found a stunningly firm link between high ACE scores and the incidence of heart disease, pulmonary lung disease, hepatitis, depression, suicide and other serious conditions.
To learn your ACE score, answer all 11 questions, then add up the number of "Yes" responses. That's your ACE score. The higher the score, the greater the potential risk to your physicial and emotional health.
While you were growing up, during your first 18 years of life:
1. Did a parent or other adult in the household often or very often swear at you, insult you, put you down, or humiliate you? Or act in a way that made you afraid that you might be physically hurt? Yes, No
2. Did a parent or other adult in the household often or very often push, grab, slap, or throw something at you? Or ever hit you so hard that you had marks or were injured? Yes, No
3. Did an adult or person at least 5 years older than you ever touch or fondle you or have you touch their body in a sexual way? Or attempt to actually have oral, anal, or vaginal intercourse with you? Yes, No
4. Did you often or very often feel that no one in your family loved you or thought you were important or special? Or your family didn’t look out for each other, feel close to each other, or support each other? Yes, No
5. Did you often or very often feel that you didn’t have enough to eat, had to wear dirty clothes, and had no one to protect you? Or your parents were too drunk or high to take care of you or take you to the doctor if you needed it? Yes, No
6. Were your parents ever separated or divorced? Yes, No
7. Was your mother or stepmother often or very often pushed, grabbed, slapped, or had something thrown at her? Or sometimes, often, or very often kicked, bitten, hit with a fist, or hit with something hard? Or ever repeatedly hit at least a few minutes or threatened with a gun or knife? Yes, No
8. Did you live with anyone who was a problem drinker or alcoholic or who used street drugs? Yes, No
9. Was a household member depressed or mentally ill, or did a household member attempt suicide? Yes, No
10. Did a household member go to prison? Yes, No
Add up your “Yes” answers to get your ACE Score. For more information, and help visit the Ace Resource Center.
Kids at Risk coverage is made possible by a grant from Ballmer Family Giving. Go here for more on Kids at Risk.