Millions of people are affected by many different forms of abuse each year. This paper will describe how abuse can affect development physically, cognitively, and emotionally. The impact on each developmental stage is discussed, beginning with infancy continuing through to adulthood. Prevention for abuse and neglect is examined and discussed.
The Effects of Abuse on Development
The outcome of abuse can affect the way an individual develops in many different ways. These results can occur long after the abuse has actually happened. These negative impacts can develop through infancy, childhood, adolescence, and adulthood. These effects can cause an individual to be victim to physical trauma, mental disorders, inability to interact socially to aggressive behavior and domestic violence
There are many different factors to consider when examining abuse. The age at which an individual is exposed or victim to abuse can influence the effects that may occur through development. The type of environment as well as the amount and severity of abuse exposed.
The earliest stage of life encountered is infancy. When exposed at this age infants are defenseless to physical abuse. Outcomes of abuse result in bruises and broken bones to long term effects causing permanent disabilities, brain trauma, and malnourishment. Shaken Baby Syndrome is one of the most well-known cases of child abuse. A majority of infants that survive shaken baby syndrome are left with disabilities that can range from mild disorders to intense mental and developmental retardation, paralysis, blindness, and the inability to eat or being in a permanent vegetative state. (Lewin, 2008)
When an infant is exposed to malevolent surroundings the brain becomes “wired” to...
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...st their caregivers and surroundings in order to successfully establish tasks like communication, attachment, and emotional development.
When exposed during childhood, abuse can affect the completion of the developmental tasks due to the child having a feeling that they are a “bad child”. This may cause them to be fearful and anxious in social interactions and when learning something new causing attention to be unfocused.
In adolescence, abuse can refrain teens from completing essential developmental tasks due to the lack of knowledge and experience. By this time in life, adolescence who do not have the basic abilities to maintain self-control, will most likely encounter difficulties in establishing a healthy emotional development. Complications with regulating a healthy relationship whether it is with peers or romantic can alter completion of these tasks as well.