Marriage – Global Shield against Trauma

Being in an automobile accident, contracting a life-threatening illness, being mugged—these and other traumatic experiences can leave scars physical and emotional. But whether in Boston or Bogota, Beijing or Beirut, Berlin or Brisbane, married men and women face significantly lower risk of acquiring such scars than do unmarried peers. Such is the conclusion of a worldwide study of traumatic-event exposure conducted by researchers from dozens of medical and academic institutions around the world.  The authors of the new study come from an impressive range of institutions, including Harvard, Pennsylvania University, and the University of Washington in the United States, Peking University in China, Balamand University in Lebanon, Moi University in Kenya, the University of Otago in New Zealand, the Federal University of Espírito Santo in Brazil, the University of New South Wales in Australia, the University of Tokyo in Japan, the University Paris Diderot in France, and the University of Ulster in Northern Ireland. Though diverse in national identity, the authors of this new study share a common understanding that exposure to traumatic events can translate into Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) and “a wide range of other adverse mental and physical outcomes.” These researchers therefore believe that “understanding who is at risk for exposure to T[raumatic]E[vents] is . . . of considerable interest.” To identify just who is most at risk for such exposure, the researchers scrutinize data collected between 2001 and 2012 for 68,894 men and women living in 24 different countries scattered across all six inhabited continents. The countries included in the study include the United States, Mexico, Columbia, Peru, Brazil, Australia, New Zealand, China, Japan, Lebanon, Israel, Nigeria, South Africa, Spain, France, and Germany.  The data reveal that over 70% of the men and women surveyed had experienced a traumatic event, with almost a third (30.5%
Please subscribe or log in to read the rest of this content.