Child maltreatment characteristics as predictors of heterogeneity in internalizing symptom trajectories among children in the child welfare system

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15 Scopus citations

Abstract

This study investigated heterogeneity in the developmental trajectories of internalizing symptoms among 541 children who were involved with the child welfare system and examined child maltreatment characteristics, including types, level of harm, and timing, as predictors of internalizing trajectory patterns. Secondary longitudinal research was conducted using data from the National Survey of Child and Adolescent Well-Being-I, collected from 1999 to 2007 in the United States. Three distinct trajectory groups were identified: high–decreasing; low–increasing; and low–stable Sexual abuse, emotional abuse, neglect, and more severe levels of harm from maltreatment predicted membership in two maladaptive groups compared to the low–stable group. The findings of the study suggest the importance of providing a thorough assessment of the type and severity of maltreatment experiences and continued monitoring of internalizing symptoms for children with child welfare involvement.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)247-257
Number of pages11
JournalChild Abuse and Neglect
Volume72
DOIs
StatePublished - Oct 2017

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This document includes data from the National Survey on Child and Adolescent Well-Being, which was developed under contract with the Administration on Children, Youth, and Families, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (ACYF/DHHS). The data were provided by the National Data Archive on Child Abuse and Neglect. Funded through the Department of Health and Human Services, Administration for Children and Families, Children's Bureau, Grant #90CA1817. The contents of this publication do not necessarily reflect the views or policies of the funders, nor does mention of trade names, commercial products, or organizations imply endorsement by the U.S Department of Health and Human Services. This information is in the public domain. Readers are encouraged to copy and share it, but please credit the author.

Publisher Copyright:
© 2017 Elsevier Ltd

Keywords

  • Child maltreatment
  • Developmental trajectories
  • Heterogeneity
  • Internalizing symptoms
  • Longitudinal

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