National Women's Health Policy

Impact of violence on emotional and mental health

Page last updated: 07 February 2011

Violence against women can have a profound impact on a women’s emotional and mental health. Depression, anxiety and suicide together contributed to 73 per cent of the total disease burden for intimate partner violence.176

Women who have experienced intimate partner violence are twice as likely to be diagnosed with a mental illness.177 For women, depression is one of the most common consequencesof sexual and physical violence and an experience of violence results in higher risk of stress and anxiety disorders, including post-traumatic stress disorder.178 Some other psychiatric disorders (for example, phobias and dissociative disorder) are more common in women reporting intimate partner violence than those who do not.179 180 Women reporting intimate partner violence are more likely to use medication for depression and anxiety.181 182