Abuse is intentional maltreatment. Abuse may result in injuries, especially in children, in vulnerable adults, and among spouses.
Most mouth and dental injuries are not caused by abuse. Mouth and dental injuries are common in children and occur from falls, playground accidents, athletic activities, fights, and automobile accidents.
Suspect abuse when:
If you suspect abuse, call your local child or adult protective agency, police, clergy, or a health professional such as a doctor, dentist, nurse, or counselor. If you suspect child abuse, you may also contact the National Child Abuse Hotline and Referral Service toll-free at 1-800-422-4453. You may be able to prevent further abuse by reporting the incident.
If you are a parent or caregiver having trouble controlling your anger with a child in your care, resources for help are available.
Last Revised: July 20, 2012
Author: Healthwise Staff
Medical Review: William H. Blahd, Jr., MD, FACEP - Emergency Medicine & David Messenger, MD
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