A risk factor is a variable that is associated with a negative outcome such as higher risk for disorders.
Overall, the earlier age of child abuse and the longer the child is maltreated, the worse the outcome . Chronic child maltreatment is a serious risk factor for a wide range of social, psychological, and medical problems across the lifespan, as demonstrated in a controlled, prospective study that followed children for 15 years and controlled for potentially confounding variables such as economic status and parental mental health problems .
Some variables have been identified as protective factors that are associated with relative resiliency to childhood maltreatment . Resiliency is more common among maltreated children who have a supportive caregiver . Adults who were maltreated in childhood have been found to be more resilient when they have a supportive partner and/or a stable living situation . Family and community factors play a larger role in predicting resiliency than do factors related to maltreated children  .
 Fairbank, J. A., Putnam, F. W., & Harris, W. W. (2014). Child traumatic stress: Prevalence, trends, risk and impact. In M. J. Friedman, T. M. Keane, P. A. Resick (Eds.), Handbook of PTSD: Science and practice (pp. 121-145). New York, NY, US: Guilford Press.
 Jaffee, S. R., Caspi, A., Moffitt, T. E., Polo-Tomas, M., & Taylor, A. (2007). Individual, family, and neighborhood factors distinguish resilient from non-resilient maltreated children: A cumulative stressors model. Child Abuse & Neglect, 31(3), 231-253.