for considerable costs to the health care, child welfare, education, juvenile justice, and criminal justice systems, as well as enormous additional costs in terms of the suffering of individuals, families, and others affected (see Figure 9-1). The most direct and probably most significant economic cost is increased morbidity and decreased health-related quality of life of the individual experiencing a MEB disorder.
The individual’s health problems, in turn, may lead to adverse consequences for other members of society, such as family members, victims of crime, and peers. Health problems typically also lead to additional costs, in the form of reduced productivity and earnings (Kessler, Heeringa, et al., 2008) and increased use of a range of social services. And, of course, MEB disorders place enormous stress on young people themselves and interfere with healthy development.
MEB disorders among young people are associated with substantially increased morbidity and reduced health-related quality of life. These health