Health Topics

Social family issues

Domestic Violence
National Library of Medicine
Abuse
Partner Abuse
Spouse Abuse
Violence
Battery
Spousal abuse

Domestic violence is a type of abuse. It usually involves a spouse or partner, but it can also be a child, elderly relative, or other family member.

Domestic violence may include

  • Physical violence that can lead to injuries such as bruises or broken bones
  • Sexual violence
  • Threats of physical or sexual violence
  • Emotional abuse that may lead to depression, anxiety, or social isolation
  • Economic abuse, which involves controlling access to money
  • Stalking, which causes fear for your own safety

The first step in getting help is to tell someone you trust, such as a friend, family member, or co-worker. You can also contact your doctor or another health care professional, an emergency shelter, or a domestic violence helpline.

The first step in getting help is to tell someone you trust.

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention


Domestic Violence
Women
Injuries and Wounds
Social/Family Issues
Domestic violence is a type of abuse. It usually involves a spouse or partner, but it can also be a child, elderly relative, or other family member. Domestic ...
Family Issues
National Library of Medicine
Stepfamilies

There are many kinds of families. Some have two parents, while others have a single parent. Sometimes there is no parent and grandparents raise grandchildren. Some children live in foster families, adoptive families, or in stepfamilies.

Families are much more than groups of people who share the same genes or the same address. They should be a source of love and support. This does not mean that everyone gets along all the time. Conflicts are a part of family life. Many things can lead to conflict, such as illness, disability, addiction, job loss, school problems, and marital issues. Listening to each other and working to resolve conflicts are important in strengthening the family.


Family
Interpersonal Relations
Social/Family Issues
There are many kinds of families. Some have two parents, while others have a single parent. Sometimes there is no parent and grandparents raise grandchildren. ...
Adoption
National Library of Medicine
Foster Care

Adoption brings a child born to other parents into a new family. Birth parents have a number of reasons for placing children for adoption. Overall, they want better lives for their children than they think they can give them.

Children who are eligible for adoption come from many different settings. Some are in foster care, a temporary home setting. Other children live in orphanages or with birth relatives until they can be adopted.

There are different kinds of adoption. Children may be adopted by a relative or a new family. Some parents adopt children from the U.S, and some adopt from abroad.


Child, Adopted
Adoption
Child, Foster
Children and Teenagers
Pregnancy and Reproduction
Social/Family Issues
Adoption brings a child born to other parents into a new family. Birth parents have a number of reasons for placing children for adoption. Overall, they want ...
Advance Directives
National Library of Medicine
Do-Not-Resuscitate Orders
Living Wills
Resuscitation Orders

What kind of medical care would you want if you were too ill or hurt to express your wishes? Advance directives are legal documents that allow you to spell out your decisions about end-of-life care ahead of time. They give you a way to tell your wishes to family, friends, and health care professionals and to avoid confusion later on.

A living will tells which treatments you want if you are dying or permanently unconscious. You can accept or refuse medical care. You might want to include instructions on

  • The use of dialysis and breathing machines
  • If you want to be resuscitated if your breathing or heartbeat stops
  • Tube feeding
  • Organ or tissue donation

A durable power of attorney for health care is a document that names your health care proxy. Your proxy is someone you trust to make health decisions for you if you are unable to do so.

NIH: National Cancer Institute


Advance Directives
Social/Family Issues
Personal Health Issues
What kind of medical care would you want if you were too ill or hurt to express your wishes? Advance directives are legal documents that allow you to spell ...
Alzheimer's Caregivers
National Library of Medicine
Caregivers for Alzheimer's Disease

Caring for someone who has Alzheimer's disease (AD) can be stressful and overwhelming. It's important to take care of yourself. Ask for and accept help.

Talk to the doctor. Find out what treatments might help control symptoms or address behavior problems. Find a support group. Others who have "been there" may be able to help and will understand.

If there are times of day that the person is less confused or more cooperative, take advantage of that in daily routines. Consider using adult day care or respite services. These offer a break with the peace of mind that the patient is being taken care of. Begin to plan for the future. This may include

  • Getting financial and legal documents in order
  • Looking into assisted living or nursing homes
  • Finding out what your health insurance and Medicare will cover

NIH: National Institute on Aging


Alzheimer Disease
Caregivers
Seniors
Brain and Nerves
Social/Family Issues
Caring for someone who has Alzheimer's disease (AD) can be stressful and overwhelming. It's important to take care of yourself. Ask for and accept help. Talk ...
Bereavement
National Library of Medicine
Grief

Bereavement is the period of grief and mourning after a death. When you grieve, it's part of the normal process of reacting to a loss. You may experience grief as a mental, physical, social or emotional reaction. Mental reactions can include anger, guilt, anxiety, sadness and despair. Physical reactions can include sleeping problems, changes in appetite, physical problems or illness.

How long bereavement lasts can depend on how close you were to the person who died, if the person's death was expected and other factors. Friends, family and faith may be sources of support. Grief counseling or grief therapy is also helpful to some people.

NIH: National Cancer Institute


Bereavement
Mental Health and Behavior
Social/Family Issues
Bereavement is the period of grief and mourning after a death. When you grieve, it's part of the normal process of reacting to a loss. You may experience grief as ...
Bullying
National Library of Medicine

Bullying is when a person or group repeatedly tries to harm someone who is weaker or who they think is weaker. Sometimes it involves direct attacks such as hitting, name calling, teasing or taunting. Sometimes it is indirect, such as spreading rumors or trying to make others reject someone.

Often people dismiss bullying among kids as a normal part of growing up. But bullying is harmful. It can lead children and teenagers to feel tense and afraid. It may lead them to avoid school. In severe cases, teens who are bullied may feel they need to take drastic measures or react violently. Others even consider suicide. For some, the effects of bullying last a lifetime.

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention


Bullying
Children and Teenagers
Social/Family Issues
Bullying is when a person or group repeatedly tries to harm someone who is weaker or who they think is weaker. Sometimes it involves direct attacks such as hitting, ...
Caregivers
National Library of Medicine

Caregivers provide help to another person in need. The person receiving care may be an adult - often a parent or a spouse - or a child with special medical needs. Some caregivers are family members. Others are paid. They do many things:

  • Shop for food and cook
  • Clean the house
  • Pay bills
  • Give medicine
  • Help the person go to the toilet, bathe and dress
  • Help the person eat
  • Provide company and emotional support

Caregiving is hard, and caregivers of chronically ill people often feel stress. They are "on call" 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. If you're caring for someone with mental problems like Alzheimer's disease it can be especially difficult. Support groups can help.

Dept. of Health and Human Services Office on Women's Health


Caregivers
Social/Family Issues
Health System
Caregivers provide help to another person in need. The person receiving care may be an adult - often a parent or a spouse - or a child with special medical needs. Some ...
Child Abuse
National Library of Medicine
Abuse
Shaken Baby Syndrome
Violence

Child abuse is doing something or failing to do something that results in harm to a child or puts a child at risk of harm. Child abuse can be physical, sexual or emotional. Neglect, or not providing for a child's needs, is also a form of abuse.

Most abused children suffer greater emotional than physical damage. An abused child may become depressed. He or she may withdraw, think of suicide or become violent. An older child may use drugs or alcohol, try to run away or abuse others.

Child abuse is a serious problem. If you suspect a child is being abused or neglected, call the police or your local child welfare agency.


Child Abuse
Children and Teenagers
Injuries and Wounds
Social/Family Issues
Child abuse is doing something or failing to do something that results in harm to a child or puts a child at risk of harm. Child abuse can be physical, sexual ...
Disabilities
National Library of Medicine

Disabilities make it harder to do normal daily activities. They may limit what you can do physically or mentally, or they can affect your senses. Disability doesn't mean unable, and it isn't a sickness. Most people with disabilities can - and do - work, play, learn, and enjoy full, healthy lives. Mobility aids and assistive devices can make daily tasks easier.

About one in every five people in the United States has a disability. Some people are born with one. Others have them as a result of an illness or injury. Some people develop them as they age. Almost all of us will have a disability at some point in our lives.

Department of Health and Human Services


Disabled Persons
Health Services for Persons with Disabilities
Social/Family Issues
Disabilities make it harder to do normal daily activities. They may limit what you can do physically or mentally, or they can affect your senses. Disability doesn' ...