Child sexual abuse can be defined as any sexual involvement or contact by an adult with a child. An older child or a child who is more powerful can also sexually abuse another child. Sexual contact includes inappropriate touching and sexual acts such as fondling, oral sex, and intercourse. Other types of abuse include exposure of a child to sexual movies, books, magazines and websites, taking pornographic pictures or recordings, or forcing a child to watch sexual; behavior between others. Child sexual abuse happens to both girls and boys.
The signs and symptoms of sexual abuse are most likely to be behavioral. Behavioral indicators include nightmares or sleep disorders, withdraw or aggression, sexual knowledge beyond their age, running away, promiscuous behavior, frequent truancy, regressive behavior such as bed wetting or thumb sucking, lack of interest in life, withdrawal from friends and family, loss of appetite, and persistent scratching of genital area. A child may talk about “secrets” that they have with an adult or express fear of being alone with a particular adult. Pay attention to these comments and ask questions
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