Childhood traumas and hallucinations: An analysis of the National Comorbidity Survey

M Shevlin, Martin Dorahy, Gary Adamson

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131 Citations (Scopus)


Data from the National Comorbidity Survey were used to estimate the relationship between occurrences of childhood trauma and self-reported experiences of hallucinations. Variables representing (1) childhood neglect, (2) childhood physical abuse, (3) rape under the age of 16, and (4) molestation under the age of 16 were used to predict experiences of visual, auditory and tactile hallucinations. After controlling for background variables (sex, age, depression, family history of depression, urbanicity, income, drug, and alcohol dependence), a history of childhood rape and molestation were significantly associated with visual, auditory and tactile hallucinations. Additionally, neglect was associated with visual hallucinations and physical abuse with tactile hallucinations. Experiencing multiple types of trauma was associated with increases in the likelihood of reporting each of the three types of hallucinations. Hallucinatory experiences are possible indicators of a traumatic childhood history. (c) 2006 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)222-228
JournalJournal of Psychiatric Research
Issue number3-4
Publication statusPublished (in print/issue) - Apr 2007


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