Having your child abused by a trusted daycare worker is a parent’s worst nightmare. Since parents need to work, we depend on and trust day care centers to provide quality are for our children when we can’t be there. There are many fine daycare providers, but unfortunately, many children do get abused while in daycare. Because many abused children can’t speak, or are scared to, they become silent victims. It is important that all parents recognize the signs that can indicate a problem and potential abuse.
Sudden behavior changes can indicate abuse.
• Separation anxiety - It is not unusual for children to feel anxious when they are separated from their parents. However, a sudden change in behavior such as inconsolable crying or tantrums as you reach the daycare center may be a cause for concern.
• Loss of appetite or over eating
• Nightmares, sleeplessness, new fears, or bedwetting
• Unusual clinginess
• Intense dislike of the caregiver
Signs of improper care, emotional abuse or neglect
• Child is unusually listless, uninterested or detached from his surroundings
• Developmental delays
• Child is very demanding of parent’s attention and affection
• Changes in sleep behavior
• Diaper rash
• Vomiting or anemia
• Stained or dirty clothing
• Sudden weight loss
• Unexplained headaches or stomach aches
Signs of physical abuse
• Unexplained injuries - There should always be a written report for any injury. When a child is hurt in daycare, it is the childcare provider’s responsibility to let the parent know how and when the accident occurred. Frequent accidents may also indicate a problem.
• Injuries coupled with behavioral changes
Signs of sexual abuse
• Torn or stained clothing
• Abnormal or stiff walk
• Difficulty sitting
• Odd vaginal smell or discharge
• Pain when using the bathroom
• Toilet accidents
• Urinary tract infections
• Bed wetting
• Pelvic or groin pain
• Trouble swallowing
• Sudden or unusual knowledge of sex
• Change in vocabulary
• Demanding to wear extra clothing
Any of these signs may indicate a problem. If you suspect abuse, do not return your child to the daycare – even if you are uncertain. Take your child to a hospital or call your pediatrician immediately to schedule a physical exam. You may want to contact a personal injury lawyer experienced in child abuse cases.
The child injury lawyers at the Kansas City Accident Injury Attorneys provide sensitive and compassionate services for child abuse, neglect and injury cases. If you suspect or have evidence that your child is being abused, call us immediately. We can investigate the situation and protect your child’s rights. Contact our Kansas City office at 888-348-2616 to learn more.