Abuse is defined as any action which intentionally causes harm to another person.

Types of abuse can include the following:

•    Physical abuse

Physical abuse can be assaulting, striking, smacking, punching, kicking, hair-pulling, biting or pushing. It can also be rough handling, physical punishments and scalding and burning.


Possible signs of physical abuse can be cuts, marks on the body, bruising and loss of hair in clumps.   An individual suffering from physical abuse may seem to have unexplained, constant ‘accidents’ and frequent injuries. Signs of malnutrition and a change in behaviour or subdued behaviour can also be a result of physical abuse.




•    Domestic violence

Domestic violence includes controlling, coercive or threatening and abusive behaviours to those who are intimate partners or to family members. So ,this includes so called ‘honour’ based violence and female genital mutilation.

Hurting, frightening, humiliation and isolating the individual are also indicators of domestic abuse. An individual suffering from abuse of this kind may have physical signs such as bruising, have limited access to money, low self esteem and a fear of getting help from the outside.


•    Sexual abuse

Any sexual activity which an individual has not consented to is classed as sexual abuse. Sexual abuse includes rape, attempted rape, inappropriate touching and indecent exposure.


Possible signs of sexual abuse include, unexplained sexual infections, a change in behaviour such as overt sexualised behaviour, bruising and bleeding in and around the genital area and torn or stained bloody underclothing.


•    Psychological or emotional abuse

Psychological abuse can include intimidation, humiliation, shaming and verbal abuse. Threats of harm and abandonment may also be used.


An individual who is being psychologically abused may have low self-esteem, insomnia, a change in appetite and show signs of distress such as anger and tearfulness.



For help with issues surrounding abuse please contact Carmel via email carmel@bahcap.com or by telephone 07931301773 for more information and to arrange an initial consultation. 

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