CitationCoppola, Elizabeth C. & Christ, S.L. (2022). The Influence of Childhood Risk and Resilience Factors on Service Members’ Depression Symptom Trajectories..
AbstractMental health challenges have recently become prominent among service members and veterans. Life course theory posits that development is a lifelong process, although there is little understanding of how experiences prior to military service (upstream)—including aspects of the family relationship—shape subsequent health trajectories (London & Wilmoth, 2006). Identifying exposures that promote or hinder resilience—resilience and risk factors, respectively— and their associations with depression trajectories may yield new understanding for intervention and prevention (Wright & Masten, 2015). This study, among the first to use longitudinal data from service members and veterans (SMVs) prior to military service, used latent growth mixture modeling to classify depression trajectories across time. The four-class solution with linear trajectories was the best fitting model for SMV, in which the largest trajectory class was characterized by low depression symptoms across development. Representing the most at-risk subgroup, class 4 (‘risky’) was characterized by low depression symptoms at age 15 that sharply increased by 2.19 points by age 45. The riskiest class, class 4, was the third largest trajectory. Consistent with our hypothesis, several exposures related to child maltreatment were associated with trajectory members into riskier classes, as were select instances of exposure to street violence. Peer and family resilience factors were associated with membership into the modal trajectory class that was characterized by low depression symptoms.
Reference TypeConference paper
Book TitleNational Council on Family Relations Annual Conference
Author(s)Coppola, Elizabeth C.