Physical Abuse

Physical abuse is the infliction of physical pain or injury or physical coercion (ANPEA).

Examples include:

  • Hitting, slapping, pushing, punching, kicking, beating, biting, scratching, shaking, arm twisting, dragging or burning.
  • Physical restraint such as tying a person in a chair, putting them in a chair they can't get out of, or locking a person in a room.

Signs of Physical Abuse

Because the results of physical abuse are often visible, this can be one of the easiest forms of abuse to identify. However, the signs of physical pain, injury or force may not always be visible so the general appearance, attitude and behaviour of the client should also be taken into account.
Instruments of physical abuse can include belts, knuckles, walking sticks, hairbrushes, and ropes.

Signs of physical abuse include:

  • Discrepancies between injury and history
  • Facial swelling or missing teeth
  • Burns
  • Seen by different doctors or hospitals
  • Unexplained accidents or injuries
  • Bruising and abrasions
  • Conflicting stories between client and carers or family members.