Signs of physical abuse

  • Bruises, burns, sprains, dislocations, bites, cuts
  • Improbable excuses given to explain injuries
  •  Injuries which have not received medical attention 
  •  Injuries that occur to the body in places that are not normally exposed to falls, rough games, etc.
  • Repeated urinary infections or unexplained stomach pains 
  • Refusal to discuss injuries 
  • Withdrawal from physical contact 
  • Arms and legs kept covered in hot weather 
  • Fear of returning home or of parents being contacted 
  • Showing wariness or distrust of adults 
  • Self Destructive tendencies 
  • Being aggressive towards others 
  • Being very passive and compliant 
  • Chronic running away

Signs of emotional abuse 

  • Physical, mental and emotional development is delayed 
  • Showing delayed speech or sudden speech disorder 
  • Fear of new situations 
  • Low self-­esteem 
  • Inappropriate emotional responses to painful situations 
  • Extremes of passivity or aggression 
  • Drug or alcohol abuse 
  • Chronic running away 
  • Compulsive stealing 
  • Obsessions or phobias 
  • Sudden under­achievement or lack of concentration 
  • Attention­ seeking behavior 
  • Persistent tiredness

Signs of sexual abuse 

  • Pain or irritation to the genital area 
  • Vaginal or penile discharge 
  • Difficulty with urination 
  • Infection, bleeding 
  • Fear of people or places 
  • Regressive behaviors, bed wetting or stranger anxiety 
  • Excessive masturbation 
  • Sexually provocative 
  • Stomach pains or discomfort walking or sitting
  • Being unusually quiet and withdrawn or unusually aggressive 
  • Suffering from what seem physical ailments that can’t be explained medically 
  • Showing fear or distrust of a particular adult 
  • Mentioning receiving special attention from an adult or a new “secret” friendship with an adult or 
  • Refusal to continue with school or usual social activities 
  • Age inappropriate sexualized behavior or language
  • Some indicators of neglect 
  • Medical needs unattended 
  • Lack of supervision 
  • Consistent hunger 
  • Inappropriate dress 
  • Inadequate nutrition 
  • Fatigue or listlessness 
  • Self­ destructive 
  • Extreme loneliness 
  • Extreme need for affection 
  • Poor personal hygiene 
  • Frequent lateness or non attendance at school 
  • Low self esteem 
  • Poor social relationships 
  • Compulsive stealing 
  • Drug or alcohol abuse

Long term impact of unmitigated child abuse

The impact of child abuse can persist for a lifetime after the abuse has been committed. Some victims of abuse are resilient and thus manage to function and survive. Much research has established the relationship between long term child abuse and life­time health and well­being, especially if the children do not get appropriate support to help them cope with the trauma. The most important point to consider is that children often are exposed to multiple forms of abuse and suffer a myriad of symptoms. Furthermore, all forms of abuse have the potential for long term impact on the victims, and can affect the victim's ability to function as a human being. Abuse challenges the self value,self esteem, and sense of worth of its victims, rendering them hopeless, helpless and unable to live a complete life.

Long term impact of child abuse 

  • Poor educational achievement 
  • Inability to complete responsibilities 
  • Inability to live according to plan/ability 
  • Inability to care for self 
  • Inability to coexist, cooperate or work with others 
  • Lack of self confidence, prone to addiction 
  • Inability to express love / or accept love 
  • Inability to lead a family, constant health problems 
  • Prone to mental health problems 
  • Low self esteem, depression and anxiety 
  • Post­traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) 
  • Attachment difficulties 
  • Eating disorders 
  • Poor peer relations, self injurious behavior (e.g., suicide attempts)

In addition to knowing the signs of victimization, below are some early warning signs to look out for in potential offenders

Signs of offenders (students) 

  • Unusual interest in sex, sexualizing inanimate objects and activities 
  • Does not stop sexual misbehavior when told to stop 
  • Uses force and coercion in social situations 
  • Unusual intensity when discussing sex and sexuality 
  • Socializes with children much younger 
  • Gives gifts, requires secrecy in relationships
  • Signs of offenders (adults) 
  • Has “favorite” student or child 
  • Attempts to find ways to be alone with children 
  • Inappropriate language, jokes and discussions about students/children 
  • Sexualized talk in the presence of students/children 
  • Gives private gifts or has private chats on facebook/internet

Sources: https://www.seisen.com/safeguarding