Clinical update

Harmful sexual behaviour among children and young people

Your essential guide to harmful sexual behaviour among children and young people and how to prevent it

Your essential guide to harmful sexual behaviour among children and young people and how to prevent it

Essential facts

Harmful sexual behaviour is when children or young people engage in sexual discussions or acts that are inappropriate for their age or development. Many will naturally grow out of these behaviours, so while it is important they are not unnecessarily stigmatised, their actions should also not be ignored.

What’s new

Harmful sexual behaviour in children and young people should not be ignored by nurses, according to new guidance from the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE). The guidance aims to ensure these problems do not escalate. For a small number of children and young people who commit sexual offences, there is evidence that shows early opportunities to recognise and address their behaviours were missed.

Signs

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