Bullying is Good for Your Health

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Researchers have found that victims of bullying and bullies are more likely to experience psychiatric troubles in childhood and into adulthood. A study led by, William E. Copeland, PhD, Associate Professor in Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences, Duke Child and Family Mental Health, and covered in the article Bullying is Good for Your Health by Time, focused on the lasting effects that bullying has on both the victim and the bully. 

The study, published in JAMA Psychiatry, found that those who are bullied suffer from long-term psychiatric effects such as anxiety, depression, or antisocial personality disorders and in some case even alcohol or marijuana abuse. “Bullying is not just a part of childhood, or some sort of harmless activity between peers.  This is actually something that has very detrimental, and very long lasting effects,” says Dr. Copeland in a different Time article titled Lasting Legacy of Childhood Bullying: Psychiatric Problems in Adulthood.  “For bullies, it’s a completely different kind of problem. With the victims, it is all related to their emotional functioning. For the bullies, they had higher rates of antisocial personality disorder, which is kind of related to criminal behavior, so they’re having completely different problems in adulthood than the victims.”

The study also found that those who were bullied experience an increase in low-grade inflammation while bullies themselves had less inflammation.  “The elevated levels of C-reactive protein [a marker used to gauge body-wide inflammation] in victims of bullying indicate they might have a three- to four-fold increased risk of developing heart disease or diabetes. But to know if that connection is going to pan out, researchers would have to wait until the participants entered their 40s or 50s.” Describes a Reuters article titled, Reuters article titled, Bullying Linked to Increased Inflammation: Study.

Effects of Bullying Last into Adulthood Study Finds by New York Times