Child marriage is one of the main forms of child sexual abuse; UNICEF has stated that child marriage "represents perhaps the most prevalent form of sexual abuse and exploitation of girls".Under the law, child sexual abuse is often used as an umbrella term describing criminal and civil offenses in which an adult engages in sexual activity with a minor or exploits a minor for the purpose of sexual gratification.
Various studies have suggested that severe child sexual abuse may have a deleterious effect on brain development. (1998) found "reversed hemispheric asymmetry and greater left hemisphere coherence in abused subjects;" Teicher et al.
It has been commonly assumed that focusing on children’s issues too long will negatively impact their recovery.
Therefore, the parental caregiver teaches the child to mask his or her issues." In many jurisdictions, abuse that is suspected, not necessarily proven, requires reporting to child protection agencies, such as the Child Protection Services in the United States.
Leading statements that can distort the story are avoided.
As disclosing abuse can be distressing and sometimes even shameful, reassuring the child that he or she has done the right thing by telling and that they are not bad and that the abuse was not their fault helps in disclosing more information.
Reports of both physical and sexual abuse were associated with a 113% increase. Because the abused subjects' verbal SAT scores were high, they hypothesized that the low math SAT scores could "stem from a defect in hemispheric integration." They also found a strong association between short-term memory impairments for all categories tested (verbal, visual, and global) and the duration of the abuse.