Identification and Prevention of Risk Behavior in Sexual Abuse Adolescents Diagnosed with Depression and PTSD

Paper Type:  Research paper
Pages:  5
Wordcount:  1360 Words
Date:  2022-09-07


Sexual abuse has been pointed out as a critical public health matter that affects one out of five children in Europe. Its impacts are usually observed in almost every aspect of the victim's life and inflict a fundamental problem. Implications follow in the short, medium and long-term for countries accountable for the appropriate development of these children. One apparent impact of sexual abuse is the development of suicidal behavior in childhood and adulthood. Affected children usually display mood disorders significantly linked to depression and other personality traits like impulsiveness (Perez-Gonzalez & Pereda, 2015).

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A study was undertaken, and it was reported that the rates of incest cases were 14.4% out of all the childhood and adolescent sexual abuse that had occurred. It was purported that sexual abuse can result in numerous psychiatric symptoms that include thumb sucking, fear, anxiety, responsiveness, and developmental complications. The signs may be severe and long-term and denote a mental disorder. In the selected sample, it was reported that 75.2% of the victims advanced at least one psychiatric condition linked with sexual abuse. In another recent study in Turkey, it was reported that only 12.1% of childhood sexual abuse victims did not exhibit psychiatric signs. Other scholars have proposed that sexually abuse adolescents who are originally asymptomatic may progress serious psychiatric disorders years after undergoing the distress (Murat, Karabekiroglu, Yildirim, Sahin, Sapmaz, Babadagi & Aydin, 2015). A psychiatric evaluation has been utilized to detect any symptoms linking an adolescent to sexual abuse. Common psychiatry diagnoses were adjustment and anxiety disorders. As such, it was recommended that family counseling be undertaken for the risk factors and the affected adolescents be well protected (Hebert, Lavoie & Blais, 2014).

In dealing with risky behaviors in sexually abused adolescents, siblings have been observed to be a crucial basis of aid and emotive sustenance. Encouraging constructive associations with siblings may uphold the regulation of emotions that will diminish the peril of developing behavior difficulties that are either internalized or externalized. Youth who have supportive relationships with siblings according to a study have conveyed less depressive symptoms. Moreover, peers have further been depicted to offer considerable support to sexual abuse victims due to their role in adolescence. Sexually abused adolescents have been observed to be more prone to confide in their peers (Rageliene, 2016). In a particular research of adolescents, it was reported that the most collective receiver of revelation of sexual abuse was a friend and close to forty percent had only disclosed to a peer of their age. Therefore, support in relationships with significant peers tends to safeguard the feelings of distress. There is also less depression and anxiety among such individuals (Hebert, Lavoie & Blais, 2014).

Numerous proof has indicated that there is a link between an account of sexual abuse and a decline in mental welfare such as suicidality, posttraumatic stress disorder, and depression. Individuals with sexual abuse pasts during their adolescence or childhood have been reported to have problems developing excellent interactive relationships and communal bonds. When sexual abuse is done by a member of their family or close people to the adolescent, the incident usually has a negative effect on their capability to develop valuable friendships and confidence. In the end, such people end up distrusting others, have low self-disclosure and social isolation (Homma, Wang, Saewyc & Kishor, 2012). Therefore, sexual abuse among adolescents usually has an adverse impact on their adulthood and in this case, concerning the development of effective relationships.

In another study, the results indicated that victims of sexual abuse during childhood are at a higher risk of suicidal ideation and suicidal forecasting. Suicidal ideas were reported to be twice as high among victims than non-victims. On the other hand, suicide attempts occur more than three times more often among victims than non-victims (Perez-Gonzalez & Pereda, 2015). Also, sexually abused children have been reported to have few close friends and engage in more conflicts with their parents. They also have more sexual partners and tend to display a former beginning of sexual activity. Moreover, they engage in more frequent unprotected sex as compared to the non-sexually abused (Murat et al., 2015).

Various studies have interconnected significant depression and dysthymia with sexual abuse. A history of sexual abuse has been involved in the early beginning of depressive disorders and even transformed the reaction to conventional medical treatments for depression (Murat et al., 2015). The form of sexual abuse undertaken, for instance, penetration and touching and the relationship of the victim to the offender who may be a stranger of close relative usually seem to impact the development and adverse extent of depression. Besides, the major depressive disorder has been identified as the principal disorder linked with sexual shock. Moreover, PTSD has been pointed out to be more regular than depression (Hebert, Lavoie & Blais, 2014).

The prevalence of sexual abuse among adolescents has resulted in specific actions being undertaken according to a study conducted. Various mediations and educational packages have been established and applied to promote sexual health and reduce risks (Roseman, Kloda, Saadat, Riehm, Ickowicz, Baltzer & Thombs, 2016). Also, most common informative methods have been considered to intensify skills and knowledge and uphold alterations in attitude. The meta-analysis undertaken suggested that sexual abuse inhibition creativities may be an operational approach for decreasing hazardous sexual activities. Suggestions for clinical exercise entail the need to screen for any sexual abuse pasts in males and females and to further provide health instruction and maintenance for sexually abused adolescents who may be susceptible to risky sexual conducts (Siu, 2016).

Additionally, it is vital to increase consciousness about sexual abuse among males to minimize the stigma linked with abuse practices. It has been observed that the incidence degrees of conveyed sexual abuse are usually lesser among men as compared to women. Boys are also less prospective to report sexual abuse than girls during childhood and adolescence (Roseman et al., 2016). As such, the actual frequency of sexual abuse among males tends to be underrated due to prospective less reporting. The stigma associated with males has resulted in increased cases of depression and PTSD among them after being sexually abused. Therefore, it is crucial to intensify contact to health care that is sensitive to gender and offers the required support for all adolescents who are sexually abused (Homma, Wang, Saewyc & Kishor, 2012).


The review has focused on how risk behaviors in sexually abuse adolescents can be identified and prevented. It has focused on those who have already been diagnosed with depression and PTSD. Risky behaviors have been observed to entail mood disorders, anxiety, nail-biting and suicidal thoughts. Also, psychiatric evaluation has assisted in identifying these symptoms some of which have been categorized as mental disorders. Health instruction and sustenance for sexually abused adolescents is vital to those who may be susceptible to hazardous sexual conducts. Also, peers have been considered to offer considerable assistance to sexually abused adolescents. Once depression and PTSD are detected early among sexually abused adolescents, then preventing risky behaviors does not become quite tough.


Hebert, M., Lavoie, F., & Blais, M. (2014). Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder/PTSD in adolescent victims of sexual abuse: resilience and social support as protection factors. Ciencia & saude coletiva, 19, 685-694.

Homma, Y., Wang, N., Saewyc, E., & Kishor, N. (2012). The relationship between sexual abuse and risky sexual behavior among adolescent boys: a meta-analysis. Journal of Adolescent Health, 51(1), 18-24.Top of Form

Murat, Y. U. C. E., Karabekiroglu, K., Yildirim, Z., Sahin, S., Sapmaz, D., Babadagi, Z., ... & Aydin, B. (2015). The psychiatric consequences of child and adolescent sexual abuse. Noro Psikiyatri Arsivi, 52(4), 393.

Perez-Gonzalez, A., & Pereda, N. (2015). Systematic review of the prevalence of suicidal ideation and behavior in minors who have been sexually abused. Actas Esp Psiquiatr, 43(4), 149-58.

Rageliene, T. (2016). Links of adolescents identity development and relationship with peers: A systematic literature review. Journal of the Canadian Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry, 25(2), 97.

Roseman, M., Kloda, L. A., Saadat, N., Riehm, K. E., Ickowicz, A., Baltzer, F., ... & Thombs, B. D. (2016). Accuracy of depression screening tools to detect major depression in children and adolescents: a systematic review. The Canadian Journal of Psychiatry, 61(12), 746-757.

Siu, A. L. (2016). Screening for depression in children and adolescents: US Preventive Services Task Force recommendation statement. Annals of internal medicine, 164(5), 360-366.

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Identification and Prevention of Risk Behavior in Sexual Abuse Adolescents Diagnosed with Depression and PTSD. (2022, Sep 07). Retrieved from

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