In young adulthood, females who had experienced teen dating violence reported increased depression symptoms and were 1.5 times more likely to binge drink or smoke and twice as likely to have suicidal thoughts.
Teens are only just beginning to understand what being in a relationship means.
"They help them develop a sense of identity, a sense of autonomy.""This study is useful in exploring a range of consequential health outcomes that may be associated with teen dating violence," says Peggy Giordano, a sociologist who studies adolescent development at Bowling Green State University in Ohio.
She was not involved in the study."The results show that effects can persist well past the period of adolescence itself, and suggest the need to consider the impact for young men as well as young women who report psychological and physical abuse experience."It's important that parents, educators and pediatricians talk to teens about dating violence so that those who need help can be linked quickly with prevention programs and assistance, says Exner-Cortens.
Dating violence can put young people at high risk for long-term health consequences, serious injury and even death.
Dating violence is a pattern of verbal, physical, sexual or emotional violence against a romantic partner.