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Research Article  |   October 1986
Developmental Play Ages of Physically Abused and Nonabused Children
Author Affiliations
  • Ann C. Howard, MOT/L, is Homebase Infant Stimulation Therapist, Child Development Center, Summer, Washington 98390
Article Information
Mental Health / Pediatric Evaluation and Intervention / School-Based Practice / Features
Research Article   |   October 1986
Developmental Play Ages of Physically Abused and Nonabused Children
American Journal of Occupational Therapy, October 1986, Vol. 40, 691-695. doi:10.5014/ajot.40.10.691
American Journal of Occupational Therapy, October 1986, Vol. 40, 691-695. doi:10.5014/ajot.40.10.691
Abstract

Although the specific effects of physical abuse are largely unknown, studies have shown deficiencies in the social behaviors of physically abused children. Because play is an important developmental process influencing socialization, physical abuse may adversely affect the developmental play age of children. This study compared the developmental play age of two groups of children aged 1 to 5 years, 12 of whom were physically abused and 12 of whom were not physically abused. Children’s play behaviors were recorded using the Preschool Play Scale. Deficits in developmental play age and play imitation were found in the abused group. These results have implications for occupational therapy practice in the identification, assessment, and treatment of physically abused children.