Signs and symptoms of child abuse
In this essay I shall describe the signs and symptoms of different types of abuse and my schools policy and procedures when handing disclosures and concerns regarding abuse.
Abuse can be defined as mistreating a child either directly or indirectly, or failing to prevent harm to a child. Abuse can be categorised into four different types of abuse, sexual, physical, emotional and neglect.
Sexual abuse is when a child is forced or enticed into engaging into acts of a sexual nature, regardless of whether the child is aware or not, sexual abuse can consist of actual physical assaults such as penetrative sex or non-penetrative assaults such as kissing, touching or rubbing inappropriately . Exposing a child to sexual images can also be seen as abuse.
Symptoms a child may exhibit if sexually abused can be the following
• pain or itching in the genital area
• ƒ bruising or bleeding near genital area
• ƒ sexually transmitted disease
• ƒ vaginal discharge or infection
• ƒ stomach pains
• ƒ discomfort when walking or sitting down
Also a child may exhibit behavioural changes due to the abuse such as possessing knowledge of sexual topics far beyond their age, or acting aggressive or withdrawn. Also acting extremely flirtatious or sexually explicit towards adults.
Physical abuse can be described as when a child has cuts bruises or some kind of physical marking on unlikely parts of the body where accidental explanations is not plausible. Usually areas of concern are the soft parts of the body, such as the buttocks, inner thighs, abdomen and cheeks.
Symptoms a child may exhibit if physically abused can include:
• unexplained bruising, marks or injuries on any part of the body
• ƒ multiple bruises- in clusters, often on the upper arm, outside of the thigh
• ƒ cigarette burns
• ƒ human bite marks
• ƒ broken bones
• ƒ scalds, with upward splash...
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