Child Abuse (cont.)
John Mersch, MD, FAAP
Dr. Mersch received his Bachelor of Arts degree from the University of California, San Diego, and prior to entering the University Of Southern California School Of Medicine, was a graduate student (attaining PhD candidate status) in Experimental Pathology at USC. He attended internship and residency at Children's Hospital Los Angeles.
William C. Shiel Jr., MD, FACP, FACR
Dr. Shiel received a Bachelor of Science degree with honors from the University of Notre Dame. There he was involved in research in radiation biology and received the Huisking Scholarship. After graduating from St. Louis University School of Medicine, he completed his Internal Medicine residency and Rheumatology fellowship at the University of California, Irvine. He is board-certified in Internal Medicine and Rheumatology.
In this Article
- What is the scope of the child abuse problem?
- What age child is abused?
- Are girls more often abused than boys?
- Is the pattern of abuse different for girls and boys?
- What is known about the perpetrators of child abuse?
- Is there an association between poverty and child abuse?
- Who abuses children?
- What is child abuse?
- What does the term child neglect include?
- What actions are viewed as physical child abuse?
- What constitutes emotional child abuse?
- What is sexual child abuse?
- What causes child abuse deaths?
- What factors predispose a person to child abuse?
- How is alleged child abuse evaluated?
- How is child abuse treated?
- How can child abuse be prevented?
- What more can be done to prevent child neglect?
- Are people who were abused as children more likely to become criminals later in life?
- Child Abuse At A Glance
How can child abuse be prevented?
This, too, is a very complex matter and includes these measures:
- A support-group structure is needed to reinforce parenting skills and closely monitor the child's well-being.
- Visiting home nurse or social-worker visits are also required to observe and evaluate the progress of the child and his/her caretaking situation.
- The support-group structure and visiting home nurse or social-worker visits are not mutually exclusive. Many studies have demonstrated that the two measures must be coupled together for the best possible outcome.
- Children's school programs regarding "good touch...bad touch" can provide children with a forum in which to role-play and learn to avoid potentially harmful scenarios.
- Parents should make sure that their child's daycare center is licensed and has an open-door policy regarding parental visitation.
- Public-awareness programs regarding child abuse and neglect can be informative.
- Developing free and anonymous support systems (for example, "hot lines") encourages the reporting of potential instances of child abuse.
What more can be done to prevent child neglect?
As children's advocates, we wish to remind parents about the importance of preventative child health care, including:
- proper use of car seats and seat belts;
- consistent use of helmets for bicycling, skateboarding, and skiing/snowboarding;
- pool and water safety;
- firearm safety;
- preventing community violence; and
- poisoning prevention.
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