Abuse (Encyclopedia of Medicine)
Abuse is defined as any thing that is harmful, injurious, or offensive. Abuse also includes excessive and wrongful misuse of anything. There are several major types of abuse: physical and sexual abuse of a child or an adult, substance abuse, elderly abuse, and emotional abuse.
Physical abuse of a child is the infliction of injury by an other person. The injuries can include punching, kicking, biting, burning, beating, or pulling the victim's hair. The physical abuse inflicted on a child can result in bruises, burns, poisoning, broken bones, and internal hemorrhages. Physical assault against an adult primarily occurs with women, usually in the form of domestic violence. It is estimated that approximately three million children witness domestic violence every year.
Sexual abuse of a child refers to sexual behavior between an adult and child or between two children, one of whom is dominant or significantly older. The sexual behaviors can include touching breasts, genitals, and buttocks; either dressed or undressed. The behavior can also include exhibitionism, cunnilingus, fellatio, or penetration of the vagina or anus with sexual organs or objects.
Pornographic photography is also used in sexual abuse with children. Reported sex offenders are 97%...
(The entire section is 1554 words.)
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Abuse (Encyclopedia of Mental Disorders)
Abuse is a complex psychosocial problem that affects large numbers of adults as well as children throughout the world. It is listed in the Diagnostic and Statistic Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-IV-TR) under the heading of "Other Conditions That May Be a Focus of Clinical Attention." Although abuse was first defined with regard to children when it first received sustained attention in the 1950s, clinicians and researchers now recognize that adults can suffer abuse in a number of different circumstances. Abuse refers to harmful or injurious treatment of another human being that may include physical, sexual, verbal, psychological/emotional, intellectual, or spiritual maltreatment. Abuse may coexist
with neglect, which is defined as failure to meet a dependent person's basic physical and medical needs, emotional deprivation, and/or desertion. Neglect is sometimes described as passive abuse.
The costs of abuse to society run into billions of dollars annually in the United States alone. They include not only the direct costs of immediate medical and psychiatric treatment of abused people but also the indirect costs of learning difficulties, interrupted education, workplace absenteeism, and long-term health problems of abuse survivors.
(The entire section is 3035 words.)
Abuse (West's Encyclopedia of American Law)
Everything that is contrary to good order established by usage. Departure from reasonable use; immoderate or improper use. Physical or mental maltreatment. Misuse. Deception.
To wrong in speech, reproach coarsely, disparage, revile, and malign.
(The entire section is 34 words.)