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Mental Health Center

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Physical Abuse - Prevention

Prevent violence in your home.

  • Learn nonviolent ways to resolve conflicts. Arguing is fine, even healthy, as long as it does not turn violent. For more information on anger control, see the topic Anger, Hostility, and Violent Behavior.

Keep yourself safe from violence.

  • Be alert to warning signs, such as threats or drunkenness, so that you can avoid a dangerous situation. If you can't predict when violence may occur, have an exit plan for use in an emergency.
  • Prevent violence with guns and other weapons. Do not provide your children or teenagers with unsupervised access to guns or other dangerous weapons.
    • Do not keep loaded guns in your home.
    • If you must keep guns in your home, unload them and lock them up. Lock ammunition in a separate place.
    • Do not keep guns in a home where there is someone who has a drug or alcohol problem, is prone to violent behavior, or has threatened suicide.
    • Make sure that no one in your home will have access to guns or other weapons unless they know how to use them safely.
  • If you are no longer living with a violent person, contact the police to obtain a restraining order if your abuser continues to pursue you and act violently toward you.
  • Teach your children that violence is not a solution. Settle arguments without yelling or hitting. Do not use physical discipline, such as spanking, pinching, ear pulling, jabbing, shoving, choking, or strangling. If you need help controlling your children, consider taking a course in parenting skills.
  • Limit your child's exposure to TV, movies, and video games to no more than 1 to 2 hours per day.
  • Watch for signs of violent behavior in your child or teen.

WebMD Medical Reference from Healthwise

Last Updated: November 14, 2014
This information is not intended to replace the advice of a doctor. Healthwise disclaims any liability for the decisions you make based on this information.
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