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Indicators and Effects of Child Abuse and Neglect

Define Child abuse as any act by another individual who is either a child or an adult that leads to significant harm to the child (Mrazek & Kempe, 2014). Child abuse can be either physical, emotional or sexual. However, it can also be about lacking love, care or attention. It is significant to note that such neglect of a child in any form is equally damaging the same way abuse does. Moreover, it worth pointing out that any abused child will usually experience multiple cases of abuse coupled with some difficulties in life (Oates, 2013). The above take place over a period instead of being one event off.

There are several signs and indicators of abuse and neglected children. For abused children, these indicators include the demonstration of mistrust to the adults. Sucking incredibly, bed-wetting or soiling and aggressive behavior (Herrenkohl, Hong, Klika, Herrenkohl, & Russo, 2013). Moreover, some children exhibit low self-esteem and drug use. Other indicators include unexplained broken bones, injuries, bruises or burn. Accordingly, these kids will provide inconsistent value and unbelievable explanations to these body injuries (Mrazek & Kempe, 2014). On the other had neglected children exhibit constant tiredness, unattended physical and medical problems, malnutrition, begging for food, stealing or hoarding food. Other show constant absents or lateness to school, inadequate clothing and difficulties in concentrating (Oates, 2013). The suicidal feeling is also an indicator of abused and neglected children (Oates, 2013). Furthermore, some of these kids demonstrate withdrawnness, extreme obedience and reluctance to go home. Others concentrate on writing poems, stories, and artworks about abuse and neglect. Also neglected children exhibit poor hygiene, messy hair and body Oduor (Herrenkohl, et al. 2013). The above is because nobody cares about how they look. Additionally, many of these children will always give comments such as nobody is to offer care at home due to desperation. They are normally left unsupervised for long hours (Young & Widom, 2014).

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There are several ways in which abuse and neglected children can be affected. It is significant to note that some children may exhibit visible effects of the abuse or neglect they are going through while others will usually show an abroad range of effects (Herrenkohl, et al. 2013). Additionally, it is worth noting that these effects can be both short term and long term depending on the frequency, extent, and type of abuse and neglect (Mrazek & Kempe, 2014). Some of these effects include psychological and developmental problems. Typically, the brain develops at an average pace during the early stages of child development. The above development is based on the experiences the children get from their surrounding conditions and environment (Kilpatrick, 2014). Repeated abuse and neglect can lead to stress which then impacts negatively on the brain's ability to respond to stress. Fear makes the brain less adaptive and more hyperactive. Such children may develop emotional and behavioral problems in the future. Moreover, abused and neglected children can develop depression and anxiety (Herrenkohl, et al. 2013)... Ill-treatment and neglect impacts negatively on the mental of children. It can result into to mental problems such as dissociation, academic problems such as relatedness, increased hypervigilance withdrawnness, flashbacks and difficulties in sleeping.

Child abuse and neglect can also lead to physical effects. Normally children are more prone to physical harm as compared to the adults. When a child is neglected and abused, physical injuries are almost unavoidable (MacMillan, Tanaka, Duku, Vaillancourt, & Boyle, 2013). However, it is significant to note that some perpetrators of these abuses are t times very careful not to leave any visible mark or injury. The above is aimed at concealing the abuse. The above explain why it is important to be able to identify a physical injury id at all the case of an abused child is to be effectively reported (Oates, 2013). Nevertheless, some of the physical effects of child neglect and ill-treatment include body damages such as bruises, swelling, and burns. At times, the physically abused children exhibit lacerations and difficulties in walking and sitting (Afifi, MacMillan, Boyle, Taillieu, Cheung & Sareen, 2014). Moreover, it can lead to pain and itching in the genital parts and at times external bleeding from the genital areas (Mrazek & Kempe, 2014). It can also lead to sexually transmitted diseases, poor hygiene, poor dressing and lack of adequate nutrition supervision and shelter.

To cope with the abuse and neglect, some children develop trauma or at times suppress the traumatizing events (Kilpatrick, 2014). The above injury can affect negatively on their emotions and physical behavior leading to eating disorders, drug, and alcohol abuse and self-harm. Additionally, it can lead to trouble sleeping and discomfort with physical touch (Herrenkohl, et al. 2013). Moreover, it is worth noting that children may be affected negatively when they witness domestic violence. Domestic violence can lead to the behavioral and emotional problem such as depression. Others may grow to hate fathers or mothers depending on the perpetrator of the violence faced (Mrazek & Kempe, 2014). Additionally, others may end up exhibiting aggressive and ago rant behavior at their adulthood. The above is based on the ideas that childhood experiences impacts on the adulthood life.

It is significant to note that at times abused and neglected children may demonstrate positive outcomes. The above is because some children have certain protective abilities and are more resilient to negative effects (Herrenkohl, et al., 2013). Such attributes can be due to personal traits such as optimism and high self-esteem. Accordingly, some may end up having self-driven success in life. Moreover, others may be extremely compassionate and empathic to others since they may not warn others to go through what they have experience in life (Mrazek & Kempe, 2014). Nevertheless, it should be noted that positive outcomes for neglected and abused children are more difficult unless and otherwise, these children receive counseling and the care they need at real stages of development.

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In conclusion, child abuse is any act that causes harm to the child. It can form an adult of fellow children and can be physical, emotional or neglect. Signs of abuse and neglect include body bruises, left unsupervised for a long time, reluctance to go home, absenteeism from school or lateness to school among others. Child abuse and neglect can lead to emotional and psychological developmental problems, physical and mental problems. Such include depression, anxiety, body injuries, trauma, dissociation, withdrawal and suicidal feelings. Accordingly, abused and neglected children van only have positive outcomes if they are rescued and given the care they need in advance.

References

Mrazek, P. B., & Kempe, C. H. (Eds.). (2014). Sexually Abused Children & Their Families. Elsevier.

Herrenkohl, T. I., Hong, S., Klika, J. B., Herrenkohl, R. C., & Russo, M. J. (2013). Developmental impacts of child abuse and neglect related to adult mental health, substance use, and physical health. Journal of family violence, 28(2), 191-199.

MacMillan, H. L., Tanaka, M., Duku, E., Vaillancourt, T., & Boyle, M. H. (2013). Child physical and sexual abuse in a community sample of young adults: Results from the Ontario Child Health Study. Child Abuse & Neglect, 37(1), 14-21.

Oates, R. K. (2013). The spectrum of child abuse: Assessment, treatment and prevention. Routledge.

Young, J. C., & Widom, C. S. (2014). Long-term effects of child abuse and neglect on emotion processing in adulthood. Child abuse & neglect, 38(8), 1369-1381.

Afifi, T. O., MacMillan, H. L., Boyle, M., Taillieu, T., Cheung, K., & Sareen, J. (2014). Child abuse and mental disorders in Canada. Canadian Medical Association Journal, cmaj- 131792.

Kilpatrick, A. C. (2014). Long-range effects of child and adolescent sexual experiences: Myths, mores, and menaces. Routledge.


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