Every 9 minutes, government authorities respond to another report of child sexual abuse. These crimes can have a serious impact of the life and development of a child, and can continue to impact the survivor later in life. Learning the warning signs of child sexual abuse is often the first step to protecting a child that is in danger.
Jump to navigation. Any one sign doesn't mean that a child was sexually abused, but the presence of several suggests that you begin asking questions and consider seeking help. Keep in mind that some of these signs can emerge at other times of stress such as:.
Many obstetrician-gynecologists knowingly or unknowingly provide care to abuse survivors and should screen all women for a history of such abuse. Depression, anxiety, and anger are the most commonly reported emotional responses to childhood sexual abuse. Gynecologic problems, including chronic pelvic pain, dyspareunia, vaginismus, nonspecific vaginitis, and gastrointestinal disorders are common diagnoses among survivors.
Any sexual activity with a child by an adult or another child is sexual abuse. It causes physical and emotional pain. It has long-term effects on the child.
What to look for in adults and children. Child sexual abuse includes touching and non-touching activity. Some examples of touching activity include:.
Any intentional harm or mistreatment to a child under 18 years old is considered child abuse. Child abuse takes many forms, which often occur at the same time. In many cases, child abuse is done by someone the child knows and trusts — often a parent or other relative.
While physical abuse is shocking due to the marks it leaves, not all signs of child abuse are as obvious. Regardless of the type of abuse, the result is serious emotional harm. But there is help available. By catching the problem as early as possible, both the child and the abuser can get the help they need.
Child sexual abusealso called child molestationis a form of child abuse in which an adult or older adolescent uses a child for sexual stimulation. Child sexual abuse can occur in a variety of settings, including home, school, or work in places where child labor is common. Child marriage is one of the main forms of child sexual abuse; UNICEF has stated that child marriage "represents perhaps the most prevalent form of sexual abuse and exploitation of girls".
Please feel free to use them in any print or broadcast story with appropriate attribution of source. Sexual abuse is a difficult subject for most people to discuss, and especially difficult for parents to discuss with their children. But as frightening as the topic may be, sexual abuse is a serious and, unfortunately, common problem that affects both boys and girls.