Tips for eliminating child physical abuse

From the physician experts at Kosair Children's Hospital; UofL Pediatrics – Forensic Medicine; Kentucky Children's Hospital; University of Kentucky – Department of Pediatrics; University of Pikeville – Kentucky College of Osteopathic Medicine

  • Remember, it is normal to feel frustrated when a baby or young child cries – but NO ONE should EVER shake or harm a baby or young child.
  • If you are feeling frustrated or angry – take a break. It's OK to leave the baby in a crib or other safe place while you take a moment to regroup.
  • Use care when deciding who can watch your child. If you don't have total and complete trust in the person, then don't trust him or her with your child. The person should have the necessary skills and patience to watch your child and should WANT to watch your child.
  • Bruising is an important warning sign for child abuse for infants and children. For a
    non-mobile infant, bruising of ANY KIND is not normal. For a child of any age, bruising to the ears, neck, torso, buttocks or genitals should raise concerns. If you see this kind of bruising, seek immediate medical attention for your infant or child.
  • Burns on a young baby or child, such as those caused by cigarettes or immersion in hot water, also are warning signs for child abuse. If you see burns on a young baby or child, seek immediate medical attention.
  • There are many good sources for more information about resources and child abuse prevention. In Kentucky, contact Prevent Child Abuse Kentucky at (859) 225-8879, toll free at (800) CHILDREN/(800) 244-5373, or  In Indiana, contact
    Prevent Child Abuse Indiana at (317) 775-6439, toll free at (800) CHILDREN/(800) 244-5373, or
  • If you suspect that a particular situation may involve child abuse, contact the appropriate toll free state or national hotline 24/7. In Kentucky, call the Kentucky Child Protection Hotline at (877) KYSAFE1/(877) 597-2331. In Indiana, call the Indiana Department of Child Services Child Abuse and Neglect Reporting Hotline at (800) 800-5556. The Childhelp National Child Abuse Hotline is also available at (800) 4-A-CHILD/(800) 422-4453.