Psychiatric disorders of children living with drug-abusing, alcohol-abusing, and non substance-abusing fathers.

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Journal Name
Journal of the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry.
Journal Volume
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Year Published
Author (Individual)
Kelley, Michelle L.
Fals-Stewart, William.
Resource Type
Journal Article
Resource Format

The present study examined lifetime psychiatric disorders and current emotional and behavioral problems of 8- to 12-year-old children living with drug-abusing (DA) fathers compared to children living in demographically matched homes with alcohol-abusing (AA) or non-substance-abusing fathers. Children's lifetime psychiatric diagnoses were determined using the Schedule for Affective Disorders and Schizophrenia for School-Age Children, Present and Lifetime Version. In addition, both parents completed the Pediatric Symptom Checklist. Substance-abusing fathers were recruited from an outpatient treatment program. Children who lived with DA fathers were more likely to have a lifetime psychiatric diagnosis (i.e., 53% versus 25% in AA homes and 10% in non-substance-abusing homes). Compared to children in the other groups, children in DA homes were more than twice as likely to exhibit clinical levels of behavioral symptoms. Children living with DA fathers were more likely to experience a lifetime psychiatric disorder and more negative behaviors compared to children living with an AA father or non-substance-abusing parents. (Author abstract)

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