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An infant is described as a two month to one-year old baby and is the most vulnerable human that can face abuse. As an infant it is not able to protect itself and relies solely on its parents or care takers to take care of it. Shaken baby Syndrome is the most common abuse found amongst infants. Shaken baby syndrome is where the parent and caregiver shake’s the baby so hard that head moves in a whiplash fashion (Infant Toddler Development Training Module, 2012). Parents and caregivers often shake the baby to quiet the baby down from crying. By shaking the baby, it can lead to bleeding and swelling of the brain. Other forms of abuse are sexual, emotional or verbal, physical neglect, medical neglect, and emotional neglect (Infant Toddler Development Training Module, 2012). Some of the common symptoms a healthcare provider might see in an infant that shouts abuse is excessively crying, poor hygiene, poor weight gain, malnutrition, fractures, bruising, trauma, lacerations, burns, bite marks, dislocations, tearing, bleeding, and scars (Signs & Symptoms of Abuse/Neglect, 2018). All cultures have different beliefs and sometimes as a health care provider we can misunderstand. In some cultures, parents will try home remedies or holistic approaches until the child is very sick. When the child is brought in to a health care facility the child will sometimes look very ill and a diagnosis may show neglect, but the parents did not neglect the child just tried cultural home remedies. In the state of New Jersey if a nurse sees signs of abuse he or she must document and report it quickly to Division of Child Protection and Permanency department who will then investigate the allegations and visit the family within 24 hours or reporting.
Infant Toddler Development Training Module 6, Lesson 4. (2012, August 30). Retrieved January 30, 2018, from http://www.floridahealth.gov/alternatesites/cms-kids/providers/early_steps/training/itds/module6/lesson4_13.html
Signs & Symptoms of Abuse/Neglect. (n.d.). Retrieved January 30, 2018, from http://childabuse.stanford.edu/screening/signs.html