Understanding Child Abuse and Neglect

Understanding child abuse and neglect is the first step to ending the pain of millions of kids suffering in our country. Specifically, this means knowing what kinds of child abuse is; this infographic illustrates just some of the types and effects that child abuse and neglect have on our society.

Child Abuse Infographic

Child abuse, or child maltreatment, can be divided into three main categories: sexual, physical, and psychological.

What is Sexual abuse?
Sexual abuse is defined as any fondling of a child’s genitals, rape, sodomy, indecent exposure, penetration, incest, and exploitation.

What is Physical abuse?
Physical abuse is any beating, kicking, biting, stabbing, choking, burning, punching, or otherwise harming a child to cause physical injury.

What is Psychological abuse?
Psychological abuse is any behavior pattern that impairs a child’s sense of self-worth or emotional development.

No one should have to suffer any kind of abuse, especially children. Unfortunately, there are 3.6 million referrals of child abuse in a given year. In other words, every 60 seconds, another case of child abuse is reported.

Child abuse is not only surprisingly common, but also deadly. Four children die a day from child abuse. That’s 131 children who die every month from some form of maltreatment, which results in 1,580 children who die every year from child abuse.

Tragically, almost three-fourths of child fatalities related to child abuse were children under the age of 3.

Even if a child survives the pain and suffering, the abuse they experienced can have a terrible lasting impact for the rest of their lives.

For instance, abused children are nine times more likely to become involved in criminal activities, as well as two times more likely to experience employment problems, financial problems, and absenteeism.

Other young people who suffered from child abuse also turn to self-medication as a means of coping. As many as two-thirds of people in treatment for drug abuse reported being abused or neglected as children.

As terrible as these facts are, there is still cause for hope. By spreading awareness about this issue, you can prevent child abuse. If you suspect a child is experiencing some form of maltreatment, call Childhelp National Child Abuse Hotline at 1-800-4ACHILD.

Continue reading for more detailed information on how to recognize and report child abuse.

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