Physical abuse is any non-accidental act involving the use of physical force causing bodily injury, trauma, or other physical suffering or bodily harm. A. In most cases, children are the victims of physical abuse (child abuse), but adults can also be victims, as in cases of domestic violence.
Abusive acts toward children can often result from parents' attempts at child discipline through excessive corporal punishment. But corporal punishment can also constitute physical abuse without being excessive, for example when it is given for sexual reasons (sadism), knowingly undeserved, out of aggression or cruelty.
Alternative terms sometimes used include physical assault or physical violence, and may also include sexual abuse.
- A news video about a case of physical abuse in South Korea (2014) involving a 7-year-old boy who suffered severe bruising on his buttocks and thighs, treated in hospital. (Warning: graphic footage)
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