REPLY1 Marial: You are right, and by what you describe abuse can happen to anyone, and it impacts everyone. We must know what resources are available in our areas, then educate our community, in our schools etc, and then have a clear plan for what we will do if it is suspected. What would be your first step if abuse was suspected? REPLY2 Domestic violence or intimate partner violence, can be defined as a pattern of behavior in any relationship that is used to gain or maintain power and control over an intimate partner. Abuse is physical, sexual, emotional, economic or psychological actions or threats of actions that influence another person. This includes any behaviors that frighten, intimidate, terrorize, manipulate, hurt, humiliate, blame, injure, or wound someone. Domestic abuse can happen to anyone of any race, age, sexual orientation, religion, or gender. It can occur within a range of relationships. Risk factors related to intimate partner violence include: young age; poor mental health levels related to low self-esteem, anger, depression, emotional insecurity or dependence, antisocial or borderline personality traits and social isolation; history of physical discipline as a child; marital instability and separation or divorce; history of perpetrating psychological abuse; unhealthy family relationships; poverty-related issues such as overcrowding or economic stress; and low levels of community intervention or sanctions against domestic violence. Nurses are the healthcare professionals who have the most frequent contact with these victims, allowing them to assess their situation frequently. Victims might also be more inclined to talk about their health issues with nurses to recover their health, so nurses have a greater chance of finding something amiss.
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