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Developmental Assessment and the School-Aged Child

Developmental Assessment and the School-Aged Child

Developmental Assessment and the School-Aged Child
Child abuse and maltreatment is not limited to a particular age—it can occur in the infant, toddler, preschool, and school-age years. Choose one of the four age groups and outline the types of abuse most commonly seen among children of that age. Describe warning signs and physical and emotional assessment findings the nurse may see that could indicate child abuse. Discuss cultural variations of health practices that can be misidentified as child abuse. Describe the reporting mechanism in your state and nurse responsibilities related to the reporting of suspected child abuse.
Developmental Assessment and the School-Aged Child

Child Abuse and Maltreatment

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Child Abuse and Maltreatment
Child abuse and maltreatment include all forms of ill-treatment such as neglect, exploitation, emotional, physical, and sexual abuse. The abuses could lead to potential or actual harm to the child’s health, dignity, or growth. The primary forms of abuse include physical abuse, neglect, sexual and psychological abuse. This essay focuses on the warning signs of abuse and maltreatment among preschoolers during assessment by nurses. It also discusses different cultural practices which may lead to misidentification of child abuse, reporting mechanisms in place, and nurses’ responsibilities on reporting suspected cases of abuse.
Like any other group of children, preschoolers may also experience abuse and maltreatment like emotional, sexual, physical abuse, and neglect. Emotionally, preschoolers may suffer if they lack a supportive and conducive environment due to restrictions by the caregiver. They could get harmed physically or used for sexual gratification by an adult leading to physical and sexual abuse. If their caregivers fail to provide basic needs, the child will face neglect (Dittrich et al., 2018). Some of the signs and symptoms noticed during assessment for such maltreatments include infections and genital injury if sexually abused, physical wounds and bruises, difficulties expressing themselves, isolating from others, and feeling fearful.
However, cultural practices such as cupping, spooning, coining, and moxibustion might resemble child abuse. The methods may produce body rashes and bruises similar to physical abuse. Cases of abuse and maltreatment should get reported to social workers, rescuers and authorities. Some of the details to note while reporting include the type of harm, child’s details, and whereabouts (Gonzalez et al., 2021). In such cases, the nurse ensures continuous monitoring of the victim, supporting the child and the family while cooperating with law enforcement during investigations.
In conclusion, child abuse and maltreatment exist in all children’s ages, and it is harmful both psychologically, physically, and emotionally. Caregivers should watch out for abuses such as neglect, physical, sexual and emotional in children. Nurses should report such cases but learn to identify cultural practices which might look similar to abuse.


Dittrich, K., Boedeker, K., Kluczniok, D., Jaite, C., Attar, C. H., Fuehrer, D., … & Bermpohl, F. (2018). Child abuse potential in mothers with early life maltreatment, borderline personality disorder and depression. The British journal of psychiatry, 213(1), 412-418. Retrieved from
Gonzalez, D., Mirabal, A. B., & McCall, J. D. (2021). Child abuse and neglect. StatPearls [Internet]. NCBI. Retrieved from

Developmental Assessment and the School-Aged Child

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