People who’ve been abused, neglected or traumatized at a young age have gone experienced Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACEs). These are life events that hold a negative impact on their lives. The type of events may include emotional, physical, or sexual abuse; violence against mother; or living with household members who were substance abusers, mentally ill or suicidal, or criminal or imprisoned household members.

Once children go through ACEs, these events are likely ingrained in their memory, and more importantly in the development of their brain and other organs and systems. There are long-lasting effects on health as they get age such as alcoholism, depression, drug abuse, eating disorders, obesity, high-risk sexual behaviors, smoking, even death. Below is the ACEs Pyramid showing how this impact happens.

Are you aware of your ACE score? If not, take our ACE quiz so that you can find out your score. According to the site, there are 10 types of childhood trauma measured in the ACE Study.

Five are personal —physical abuse, emotional abuse, sexual abuse, physical neglect, and emotional neglect.

Five are related to other family members: a parent who’s an alcoholic or suffers from addiction, a mother who’s a victim of domestic violence, a family member in jail, a family member diagnosed with a mental illness, and the disappearance of a parent through divorce, death or abandonment.

Each type of trauma counts as one. So, a person who’s been physically abused, with one alcoholic parent, and a mother who was beaten up has an ACE score of three. The research has shows the higher the score, the higher a person’s risk of adverse health outcomes. Read more about what your ACE score means.

Healing from the effects of ACEs is possible. Read more on our blog.

Do you know your score?

Discover your ACE score and unlock a new understanding of your life. Take the test and gain insights into how your early experiences shape your well-being. Don't let your past define you – empower yourself with knowledge.

Joanne Marszal

Joanne Marszal


I live in West Palm Beach Florida and I have a Multimedia Journalism degree from Florida Atlantic University. Writing is my passion. I love helping people with information they need to know.


Authors express their own opinions which do not necessarily reflect the opinions of the Stop Abuse Campaign.