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Ageing and Disability Abuse Helpline1800 628 221Ageing and Disability Abuse Helpline 1800 628 221(Monday – Friday 9-5) (Mon – Fri 9-5)

Physical abuse


  • Pushing, shoving, or rough handling;
  • Kicking, hitting, punching, slapping, biting, and/or burning;
  • Restraining: physical or medical;
  • Locking the person in a room or home or tying to a chair or bed;
  • Intentional injury with a weapon or object;
  • Overuse or misuse of medications.

Warning sings to observe

  • Internal or external injuries (sprains, dislocations and fractures, pressure sores, unexplained bruises or marks on different areas of the body, pain on touching);
  • Broken or healing bones;
  • Lacerations to mouth, lips, gums, eyes or ears, missing teeth and/or eye injuries;
  • Evidence of hitting, punching, shaking, pulling, i.e. bruises, lacerations, choke marks, hair loss or welts;
  • Burns, i.e. rope, cigarettes, matches, iron, and/or hot water

Physical abuse case study

George is a 78 year old man. Whilst undergoing rehabilitation for a knee replacement he has resided with his son, Ken and Ken’s family.

George has bruising on his arms and says that Ken gets angry and has grabbed him but doesn’t mean anything by it.


  • George disclosed that Ken gets angry and has grabbed him.


  • Evidence of bruising on George’s arm.
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Last updated: 23 Nov 2020