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Child abuse is doing something or failing to do something that results in harm to a child or puts a child at risk of harm. Child abuse can be physical, sexual or emotional. Neglect, or not providing for a child's needs, is also a form of abuse.
Most abused children suffer greater emotional than physical damage. An abused child may become depressed. He or she may withdraw, think of suicide or become violent. An older child may use drugs or alcohol, try to run away or abuse others.
Child abuse is a serious problem. If you suspect a child is being abused or neglected, call the police or your local child welfare agency.
- Child Abuse: The Hidden Bruises (American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry) Also in Spanish
- Understanding Child Trauma (Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration) Also in Spanish
- What Is Child Abuse and Neglect? Recognizing the Signs and Symptoms (Children's Bureau) - PDF
- Questions and Answers about Memories of Childhood Abuse (American Psychological Association)
Statistics and Research
- Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACEs) Study (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention)
- CDC Vital Signs: Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACEs) (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention)
- Child Abuse and Neglect Fatalities: Statistics and Interventions (Children's Bureau)
- Child Maltreatment Prevention (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention)
- ClinicalTrials.gov: Child Abuse (National Institutes of Health)
Journal Articles References and abstracts from MEDLINE/PubMed (National Library of Medicine)
- Article: The Effects of Childhood Maltreatment on Non-Suicidal Self-Injury in Male Adolescents:...
- Article: Association between Work-Related Trauma Exposure and Posttraumatic Stress Symptoms among Child...
- Article: Prenatal Sociodemographic Factors Predicting Maltreatment of Children up to 3 Years...
- Child Abuse -- see more articles
- National Child Abuse and Neglect Data System Glossary (Family and Youth Services Bureau)
- Going to a Psychologist, Psychiatrist, or Therapist (For Kids) (Nemours Foundation) Also in Spanish
- How to Handle Abuse (Nemours Foundation) Also in Spanish
- Helping Yourself Heal: A Recovering Man's Guide to Coping with the Effects of Childhood Abuse (Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration) - PDF
- Helping Yourself Heal: A Recovering Woman's Guide to Coping with Childhood Abuse Issues (Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration) - PDF Also in Spanish
The information on this site should not be used as a substitute for professional medical care or advice. Contact a health care provider if you have questions about your health.