Ways to Help

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The Childhelp National Child Abuse Hotline 1-800-4-A-CHILD (1-800-422-4453) is dedicated to the prevention of child abuse. Serving the United States, its territories, and Canada, the hotline is staffed 24 hours a day, 7 days a week with professional crisis counselors who, through interpreters, can provide assistance in over 170 languages. The hotline offers crisis intervention, information, literature, and referrals to thousands of emergency, social service, and support resources. All calls are confidential.

National Child Abuse Hotline
1.800.422.4453
www.childhelp.org
National Domestic Violence Hotline
1.800.799.7233
www.ndvh.org
Rape, Abuse & Incest National Network
1.800.656.4673
www.rainn.org
National Teen Dating Abuse Helpline
1.866.331.9474
www.loveisrespect.org
National Suicide Prevention Lifeline
1.800.273.8255
www.suicidepreventionlifeline.org

SIGNS OF ABUSE:

A child who’s being abused may feel guilty, ashamed or confused. He or she may be afraid to tell anyone about the abuse, especially if the abuser is a parent, other relative or family friend. In fact, the child may have an apparent fear of parents, adult caregivers or family friends. That’s why it’s vital to watch for red flags, such as:
Withdrawal from friends or usual activities
Changes in behavior — such as aggression, anger, hostility or hyperactivity — or changes in school performance
Depression, anxiety or unusual fears or a sudden loss of self-confidence
An apparent lack of supervision
Frequent absences from school or reluctance to ride the school bus
Reluctance to leave school activities, as if he or she doesn’t want to go home
Attempts at running away
Rebellious or defiant behavior
Attempts at suicide
  • Specific signs and symptoms depend on the type of abuse and can vary. Keep in mind that warning signs are just that — warning signs. The presence of warning signs doesn’t necessarily mean that a child is being abused.
PHYSICAL ABUSE SIGNS & SYMPTOMS
Unexplained injuries, such as bruises, fractures or burns
Injuries that don’t match the given explanation
Untreated medical or dental problems

 

SEXUAL ABUSE SIGNS & SYMPTOMS
Sexual behavior or knowledge that’s inappropriate for the child’s age
Pregnancy or a sexually transmitted infection
Blood in the child’s underwear
Statements that he or she was sexually abused
Trouble walking or sitting or complaints of genital pain
Abuse of other children sexually

 

EMOTIONAL ABUSE SIGNS & SYMPTOMS
Delayed or inappropriate emotional development
Loss of self-confidence or self-esteem
Social withdrawal or a loss of interest or enthusiasm
Depression
Headaches or stomachaches with no medical cause
Avoidance of certain situations, such as refusing to go to school or ride the bus
Desperately seeks affection
A decrease in school performance or loss of interest in school
Loss of previously acquired developmental skills

 

NEGLECT SIGNS & SYMPTOMS
Poor growth or weight gain
Poor hygiene
Lack of clothing or supplies to meet physical needs
Taking food or money without permission
Eating a lot in one sitting or hiding food for later
Poor record of school attendance
Lack of appropriate attention for medical, dental or psychological problems or lack of necessary follow-up care
Emotional swings that are inappropriate or out of context to the situation
Indifference

http://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/child-abuse/basics/symptoms/con-20033789