Child abuse and maltreatment are not limited to a particular age—it can occur in the infant, toddler, preschool, and school-age years. Infants are at serious risk of maltreatment because of their vulnerability and dependence on others and the processes involved in neurocognitive and psychosocial development. Maltreatment is exhibited through physical abuse, neglect, emotional abuse, sexual abuse, and medical abuse.
Am going to choose infant group because they are the ones more vulnerable age group because of the immaturity and capacity to talk and ask for help.We have different types of abuse like for example, physical abuse which is non-accidental infliction of physical injury to a child, emotional abuse which is the rejecting, ignoring, criticizing, isolating, or terrorizing of children.
Also sexual abuse as any activity with a child, before the age of legal consent, that allows sexual gratification of an adult or a significantly older child. Another one is neglect which is the failure to satisfy a child’s basic needs, can assume many forms as not providing hygiene, basic nutrition or adequate shelter.In an infant, the most common abuse is physical abuse , like head injuries, broken bones at different stages of healing, skin injuries, and sexual abuse .
The shaken infant is intracranial hemorrhages, retinal hemorrhages and small ‘‘chip’’ fractures at the major joints of the child’s extremities can result from very rapid shaking of an infant this one is very common . Sexual abuse symptoms may include infection, genital injury, abdominal pain, constipation, chronic or recurrent urinary tract infections or behavioral problems.
Neglect in an infant is non-compliance with health care recommendations as vaccination and routine doctor appointments, not enough food resulting in hunger, and the failure of a child physically to thrive, exposure of children to drugs and inadequate protection from environmental dangers, not supervising and poor hygiene .
Culture influences in the way we see child abuse, sometimes skin injuries is not abuse is a type of ritual to cure the infant of fever or devils . As nurses, we need to identify any type of abuse and reported to abuse hotline or children and families.