Childhood Trauma Test: The ACE Test and What It Means

Why should you consider taking a childhood trauma test? If you had a rough childhood and survived, is there any value in revisiting the past?

Trauma from the past can have an unsettling effect on the present and the future. If you suffer from something like anxiety, nightmares, or other complaints and you don’t know the source, a childhood trauma test may help.

Keep reading to find out why healing old trauma can lead to a happier, healthier future.

What Is the ACE Test?

The ACE childhood trauma test is a valuable tool to help identify adults who are at elevated risk for physical and mental health problems. There are different types of childhood trauma tests, and the ACE should mainly be used as a starting point since it is not comprehensive.

What kind of traumatic experiences have you experienced in your life? Every person is unique, and what comes easy for you may be hard for someone else. When mental health professionals wanted to develop a childhood emotional trauma test, they wanted to make it simple and easy to take. The Adverse Childhood Experiences, or ACE test, is a survey tool used to assess childhood trauma. It’s quick and easy to take, consisting of ten simple questions. The goal was to help diagnose problems with health and well-being in adults, and to help minimize the chances of generational trauma.

Woman taking the ACE test assessment
Taking the ACE test can help you understand your experiences better (Image Source: Shutterstock)

The ACE test covers 10 types of childhood trauma, including physical, emotional, and sexual abuse; household dysfunction; and neglect. It is important because studies have shown that exposure to childhood trauma can have long-lasting negative effects on health. Adults who experienced trauma as children have a higher risk of chronic disease, mental health problems, and substance abuse. It is not a diagnostic tool, so its function is limited. It was designed to help put you on the right path to recovery and health. Taking the ACE test can help you understand your experiences better, and see how they can impact your health.

Breaking the Cycle of Childhood Trauma

Trauma has a way of sticking around and perpetuating itself. People who have been abused are at a higher risk of becoming abusers. They can also fall victim to trauma bonding, a form of cyclical, repeating trauma.

Trauma bonding is an emotional attachment formed between a victim and an abusive person. This is often a result of the trauma experienced by the victim during the abuse. This bond can make it difficult for the victim to leave the abusive situation and can persist even after the abuse has ended. Healing from trauma bonding involves addressing the psychological and emotional effects of the abuse and developing a healthy sense of self-worth and self-esteem.

mother babysitter telling a funny fairy tale story to smart cute kid
It’s important to address any co-occurring mental health issues (Image Source: Shutterstock)

Overcoming trauma bonding helps you build a happier, healthier life. Each step on the path is very rewarding, so once you get started, it can be easy to keep going. The first step is to seek support from trusted friends, family, or a therapist. They can help you practice self-care, including the building of healthy habits and self-compassion.

It is important to address any co-occurring mental health issues, such as depression or anxiety. This will help you build healthy relationships and set appropriate boundaries with others.

You may want to consider participating in a support group for survivors of abuse or trauma. The more people you can connect with during your healing process, the better. And once you are firmly on the road to recovery, you should continue to visit with mental health professionals to fine-tune your mental state.

Remember that healing from trauma bonding can be a long process. However, each step can be incredibly rewarding, and as you see the positive results, this can give you the strength and motivation to continue. With the right support and resources, you can overcome past trauma and move forward toward a healthier and happier future.

You Can Learn From Your Childhood Experiences

The childhood trauma test can help you address past experiences and find some healing. Specialized mental health professionals can help you navigate the difficult feelings and problems you may have carried with you from your childhood.

There is more good news. Most children who experience trauma are able to rise above their past and not pass it on. If abuse always led the victim to become an abuser, within several generations the whole world would fit into the victim category. The fact that one-third of people have a zero ACE score means most people who are abused are able to break the cycle. If you or someone you love has suffered adverse childhood events, the numbers are on your side.

How Childhood Trauma Shapes Your Personality ︱ Psych2Go

Interestingly, early childhood care providers are three times as likely to have a high ACE score. This means that those who suffered as children are highly motivated to help the young overcome and avoid future traumas.

Take a Childhood Trauma Test

You can take an online ACE test or visit a mental health professional and take it under their supervision. It’s a short test with ten questions about your general environment growing up.

So, who is the ACE test for? In a perfect world, everyone would take this test. It’s short, simple, and easy. If you get a low score, you can be more confident that you had a healthy childhood. The higher your score, the more likely it is that you could benefit from specialized care or therapy. The sooner you find out, the easier and faster it may be.

If you have a high ACE score, it can sometimes lead to commitment issues. It’s hard to trust other people when your trust was damaged as a child. Family therapy can be especially useful when dealing with commitment issues because your family will understand the situation better than almost anyone else. They can provide other perspectives and help you understand. In some cases, they may even be able to apologize for any role they played.

If you are in a relationship, couples therapy can also help. By including your partner, you can support each other and speed up the process of healing, understanding, and recovery. A partner who better understands you is more likely to be supportive and understanding, and less likely to feel hurt.

I recommend you take the ACE test as soon as possible. Can you find five minutes right now? You might be opening the door to unexpected healing and joy.