Contrary to some beliefs, words can hurt—and when directed at a child, emotional abuse can severely damage a child’s mental health or social development. Children experiencing emotional abuse may seem excessively withdrawn, fearful or anxious about doing something wrong. Children experiencing this form of abuse can also show extreme behaviors, from being aggressive, demanding and extremely compliant.
Another very common type of child abuse is child neglect. This is defined as a pattern of failing to provide a child with basic needs, whether it be adequate food, clothing, hygiene or supervision. This form of abuse is not always easy to spot, however there are signs you can look for. Children experiencing this form of abuse can appear to have bad hygiene, their clothes can be ill-fitting or inappropriate for the weather. Children may also have untreated illnesses or physical injuries.