If you're experiencing any form of abuse, with everything else going on your own health might not be a priority for you. You are important though, and your health matters.

Injuries as a result of domestic abuse and sexual violence can heal, but it's important to get medical treatment to make sure that they are dealt with properly and to prevent infection. This might not be easy to do if the person abusing you is stopping you from getting medical treatment.

Physical abuse is not only about being hit, slapped, bitten, cut or any other kind of wounding or bodily harm. Being starved or force fed will also have a direct impact on your physical health and can lead to health problems that could potentially be long term.

If you are forced to have sex against your will or are made to engage in risky sexual activity, this may result in physical injuries and also leave you at risk of contracting a sexually transmitted infection, both of which will have an impact on your health, particularly if you are then stopped from accessing appropriate treatment.

Being forced or made to take drugs, prescription or illegal, or NPS (New Psychoactive Substances which used to be called ‘legal’ highs), will have an impact on your ability to function and ultimately your ongoing physical and mental health, particularly if you develop a dependency on those substances.

If you are concerned about any aspect of your health, talk to your GP.  They can make referrals into any of the health services you may need.  GP surgeries in Torbay also have specially trained staff who can support you if you disclose domestic abuse or sexual violence to your GP.  You can also check out our Directory for other services.