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The Basics

Intimate partner violence (IPV), including teen dating violence (TDV), is a major health concern for youth and adults, affecting millions of people each year in the United States. The impacts can be devastating and last a lifetime, but preventing IPV and TDV is possible.

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Risk Factors

Research shows that a combination of individual, relational, community, and societal factors contribute to an individual’s risk of experiencing IPV. For example, some risk factors include witnessing or being a victim of violence as a child, belief in strict gender roles, economic stress, and traditional social norms.

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Protective Factors

Research has identified factors that help protect individuals from experiencing TDV, including high empathy, a positive relationship with one’s mother, and connectedness to school. Research is still identifying what factors make IPV less likely to occur, but some evidence suggests that increased economic opportunity and secure housing may be protective against IPV.

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Injury, disability, and death can result from experiencing IPV. Its consequences may cause illness, symptoms of depression and anxiety, suicidal ideation, and social difficulties that can last long after the violence ends. Victims may try to cope with trauma in unhealthy ways by smoking, drinking, or taking drugs.

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More information from CDC and credible sources can support your efforts to stop violence before it starts. Explore these resources to help start, guide, and strengthen your approach to improving the health and well-being of people and the community where they live.

* The titles of these documents changed in July 2023 to align with other Prevention Resources being developed by CDC's Injury Center. The original titles are noted in each document's suggested citation section.


Innovative and ongoing research gives the evidence and insight needed to prevent violence. Consult these trusted data sources to better assess how risk and protective factors influence people’s lives and impact where they live, work, and play.

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  • National Intimate Partner and Sexual Violence Survey

    The National Intimate Partner and Sexual Violence Survey is an ongoing survey that collects the most current and comprehensive national- and state-level data on intimate partner violence, sexual violence and stalking victimization in the United States.

  • Youth Risk Behavior Surveillance System

    The Youth Risk Behavior Surveillance System monitors six categories of health-related behaviors that contribute to the leading causes of death and disability among youth and adults.

Published Date: July 22, 2019; Last Reviewed: Sept 15, 2023

Source: National Center for Injury Prevention and Control, Division of Violence Prevention