Physical abuse occurs when a child is severely and/or persistently hurt or injured by an adult or a child's caregiver. It may also be the result of putting a child at risk of being injured. Some examples are:
- hitting, shaking, punching
- burning and scolding
- excessive physical punishment or discipline
- attempted suffocation
- shaking a baby.
Possible signs of physical abuse are:
- broken bones or unexplained bruises, burns, welts
- the child is unable to explain an injury or the explanation is vague
- dehydration or poisoning
- the child is unusually frightened of a parent or caregiver
- arms and legs are covered by clothing in warm weather
- when parents delay getting medical assistance for their child’s injury
- brain damage through shaking or hitting.