It is important for you to know how to recognize child abuse. Each type of child abuse has behavioral and physical indicators.
Continual attitude or acts, which interfere with a child's psychological or social development.
Emotional Abuse Physical Indicators:
- Eating disorders
- Speech disorders, such as stuttering
- Weight or height significantly below the norm
- Flat or bald spot on infant's head
- Nervous disorders such as hives, rashes, facial tics, or stomachaches
Emotional Abuse Behavorial Indicators:
- Habit disorders, such as biting, rocking, head banging
- Regressive behaviors, such as thumb sucking, "baby talk", etc.
- Poor relations with peers
- Cruel behavior to other children or animals
- Substance abuse, excessive risk taking, suicide attempts, prostitution, delinquency
- Fire setting
Act that results in non-accidental injury or threat of harm to a child.
Physical Abuse Physical Indicators:
- Unexplained, chronic or repeated brusing
- Unexplained burns
- Other unexplained or repeated injuries
Physical Abuse - Behavioral Indicators:
- Behavioral extremes (withdrawal, aggression, regression)
- Excessive fear of the parent or caregiver
- Unusual shyness, wariness of physical contact
- Attempt to hide injuries
- Depression, excessive crying
- Antisocial behavior, such as substance abuse, truancy, or running away
Any sexually natured act upon or with a child.
Sexual Abuse - Physical Indicators:
- Somatic complaints, including pain and irritation of the genitals
- Sexually transmitted diseases
- Bruises or bleeding from external genital, vagina or anal region
- Genital discharge
- Torn, stained, or bloody underclothes
- Frequent, unexplained sore throats, yeast or urinary infections
Sexual Abuse - Behavioral Indicators:
- Poor peer relationships, inability to relate to children of same age
- Regressive behaviors, such as thumb sucking, bedwetting, fear of the dark
- Sudden changes in behavior
- Promiscuity, seductive behavior, or prostitution
- Aggression or delinquency
- Truancy or chronic running away
- Substance Abuse
- Relunctance to participate in recreational activity
- Recurrent nightmares, disturbed sleep patterns, or fear of the dark
- Sudden decline in school performance
- In young children, preoccupation with sexual organs (his/her, parents', or other children's)
Richland County Children Services is accepting proposals from attorneys seeking to provide legal services to kinship caregivers working with the agency.