The Long-Term Health Benefits of Open Adoption

A guest writer from Healthline.com shares some of the long-term benefits of open adoption. Here’s an excerpt from her article:

“...Open adoption has been shown to hold many benefits for all involved, and this is the case when it comes to the child’s health too. Along with the benefits related to the adoptee’s emotional health, open adoption can also have a positive impact on their physical health."

The Emotional Health Benefits of Open Adoption

For years researchers have studied the effects of adoption on the emotional well-being of adoptees and the majority of studies published have found that an open adoption offers definite advantages over confidential adoptions. The following are just a few of findings that are highlighted in a paper published by Princeton University and The Brookings Institution:

  • Open adoption can prevent identity confusion
  • The secrecy of a confidential adoption has been found to have a negative impact on the way the adoptee views their birthparent and can interfere with positive identity formation
  • Open adoption gives the adoptee a stronger support network of adults

The American Pregnancy Association concurs with these points and also includes the protection against a sense of abandonment as another one of the benefits of open adoption and the child’s ability to have contact with their birth parents.

The Physical Health Benefits

According to the National Adoption Information Clearinghouse (NAIC), there are more than 60,000 Americans currently searching for their birthparents or children. Though the reasons vary, many do it because they need to find out about or to share genetic and medical information. The importance of having access to this kind of information when it comes to one’s health is precisely why many judges are willing to open sealed adoption records.

The health benefits of an open adoption have never been more apparent than they are now with all of the evidence pointing to a genetic link in many serious and life-threatening conditions. The more you and your adopted child know about their medical history, the better. And though adoptive parents are given some medical and family history on the child during the process, open adoption allows continued access over time….”

Adrienne is a freelance writer and author who has written extensively on all things health and fitness for more than a decade. When she’s not holed-up in her writing shed researching an article or off interviewing health professionals, she can be found frolicking around her beach town with husband and dogs in tow or splashing about the lake trying to master the stand-up paddle board.

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References:
- Berry, Marianne. (1993). Risks and Benefits of Open Adoption. The Future of Children. Princeton-Brookings. Retrieved on March 20, 2014, from http://futureofchildren.org/publications/journals/article/index.xml?journalid=66&articleid=459&sectionid=3153&submit
- Open Adoption Advantages. (June 2007). American Pregnancy Association. Retrieved on March 20, 2014, from http://americanpregnancy.org/adoption/openadoptionadvantages.htm
- Randall, Mary Carol MA. Adoptees and Genetic Information. (2011). Genetic Health. Retrieved on March 20, 2014, from http://www.genetichealth.com/resources_adoptees_and_genetic_information.shtml#Anchor6