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Behaviour and Thought Problems Tips

Ways To Identify Behavioral Problems

Rk Singh 88% (60 ratings)
DNB
Pediatrician, Varanasi
Ways To Identify Behavioral Problems

A pediatrician manages a child's overall physical and psychological health condition. While most parents consult a pediatrician when the child falls sick, they miss the importance of regular visits to the doctor even if the child is seemingly healthy. There are recommended schedules which prescribe regular visits to the doctor from about a week after the birth of the child. The visits are more frequent up till the age of 6 or 7, after which a monthly visit is usually sufficient. The following is a list of reasons why your child should be taken to a pediatrician every month:

1. Documenting the rate of growth
The pediatrician measures the child's weight and height during every visit and charts them. This is important for comparison with the average rate of growth and pin pointing the problems in normal growth (if any) and the reasons for these problems. For example, if a 4 year old girl is in the 80th percentile for height, it means that 80% of the girls her age are shorter than she is and 20% are taller than she is. The rate of growth is an indicator of a child's general health.

2. Detecting deviations in developmental patterns
There are well-defined physical and emotional developmental patterns for children of all ages. For example, a child starts using signals to communicate by 4 months, or starts talking by the age of 2. A pediatrician can spot deviations from the standard patterns better than parents can. Apart from the measurement of height and weight, sometimes hearing, motor skills and vision tests are also conducted on your visit to the pediatrician to ensure that these basic systems and functions are developing properly.

3. Identifying reasons behind behavioral problems
Behavioral issues in children can be caused by a number of reasons - their inability to correctly express physical discomfort, bonding or attachment issues with the parents or caregivers, interactive problems with peers in school etc. Common behavioral problems are snoring, sleep walking, bed wetting, outbursts of anger, lack of social communication etc. The problems can be prevented from becoming complicated conditions if treated early.

4. Prevention of diseases
The schedule for all the required vaccinations is maintained by the pediatrician. Apart from immunization, regular visits to a pediatrician are important for pointing the beginning symptoms of certain diseases. Nutritional deficiencies, which are very common in children, can be diagnosed and addressed before they lead to health problems. Often parents become extremely apprehensive about the child's health- their queries can be answered and their worries can also be put to rest by these visits.

4 people found this helpful

Behavioural Problems - What Causes Them?

Ms. Ekta Singh 90% (383 ratings)
MA - Psychology, M-Phill Psychology, B.Ed, C.I.G, ECCE, B.A. Psychology
Psychologist, Ghaziabad
Behavioural Problems - What Causes Them?

Behavioural disorders are a type of psychological disorder in which abnormal patterns of behaviour are observed in an individual for a long period of time, at least for 6 months. Behavioural Disorders are very problematic and parents usually take their children for mental health assessments due to the problematic behaviour in external settings. These problems can also occur in adults. When the behavioural problem is not treated in childhood at the appropriate time, then these can cause hindrance in the other aspects of an individual’s life such as the career, and maintenance of the interpersonal relationship.

Types of behavioural problems
There can be various types of behavioural issues that can be commonly seen in children as well as in adults and these are mentioned below.

  1. Anxiety disorders- These types of problems can be characterised by the irrational and persistent fear, tension, anxiety and other disturbances in the behavioural pattern of an individual. These can be further classified into the generalised anxiety disorder, panic disorders and phobias.
  2. Disruptive behavioural disorders- Also called as impulse control disorders, these are characterised by the inability of an individual to control one’s emotional state and behavioural patterns due to which they cause harm to themselves or others. The behaviours may involve the destruction of other’s property, disobeying the societal norms and rules and regulation imposed by authorities and laws, show aggressive behavioural patterns and violating other’s rights.
  3. Dissociative disorders- These can be characterised by the interrupted connections in the consciousness of an individual where they become dissociated with their memory and identity. They forget who they are and where do they belong to and behave like someone who does not know himself or herself.
  4. 4. Emotional disorders- It involves various abnormal behavioural patterns such as behaving abruptly in normal circumstances by showing inappropriate emotions and actions, difficulty in learning, maintaining interpersonal relationships and other social relations, persistent feeling of unhappiness, fear and anxiety.
  5. Pervasive developmental disorder- These occur during the development of the child and continue to affect the different aspects of a child’s life. Disorders such as Autism and Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder are few examples.

Symptoms of Behavioural Problems
There are mainly two types of symptoms: Emotional and physical

Emotional symptoms involve becoming nervous or anxious very easily, unable to handle stress, blaming others, aggressive behaviour, disregard for rules and laws, showing temper tantrums, etc.

Physical symptoms involve various types of things that can be observed such as fever, headache, substance abuse problems can lead to the appearance of various physical signs and symptoms such as bloodshot eyes, shakiness, burnt fingertips etc.

Causes of Behavioural Problems
There can be biological and environmental causes for behavioural problems in an individual. Biological causes involve health issues such as any disease or chronic ailment, improper diet, damage to the brain or hereditary problems. On the other hand, environmental issues involve any stress in the family such as divorce or death of a family member, neglectful parents or authoritarian parents, poor discipline and disinterest in education etc. In case you have a concern or query you can always consult an expert & get answers to your questions!

2553 people found this helpful

How To Cope With School Refusal Behavior In Children?

Dr. Deepa Nathan 89% (30 ratings)
MBBS, MD - Psychiatry
Psychiatrist, Chennai
How To Cope With School Refusal Behavior In Children?

Blessed are the parents whose children enjoy going to schools. Some parents have to sweat it out to convince and cajole their kids into going to schools. Every morning brings in a new struggle. You will often come across kids who hate going to schools. From complaining of a headache to stomach aches, they will try everything under the sun to give the school a miss. With time, however, things get under control, much to the parent's relief.

The situation gets dicey when children continue to panic, get stressed out at the mere thought of going to school (for a longer duration of time). With time, things get more and more complicated. A situation as critical as this is known as School Refusal Behavior. School refusal can affect children, adolescents, and even teenagers.

Factors that trigger school refusal behavior:
School refusal in children may be an amalgamation of many factors:

  1. In some children, the problem may be due to ADHD (Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder). It is a common behavioral disorder that affects many children and even teenagers. In ADHD, children find it a herculean task to concentrate or to pay attention in class. Needless to say, this affects a child's overall performance in class. The fear of getting rebuked and punished (by teachers) may trigger school refusal in such children.
  2. Many parents set unrealistic goals for their children. They want their children to be the best. What they fail to realize is that in doing so, they end up suffocating the kids. In few extreme cases, the pressure to excel in academics grips them with an unknown fear. They start avoiding classes. They get panic attacks at the mention of schools.
  3. There are some menaces which can make life miserable. Being bullied in school (by classmates or seniors) is one such issue. As time progresses, the situation may get so unbearable that the child at the receiving end starts showing signs of school refusal.
  4. Children with undiagnosed and untreated depression, stress, and anxiety may show signs of school refusal. Such kids prefer to stay within themselves. They don't enjoy social gatherings or interacting with people much.
  5. Some children want to be with their parents all the time. Going to school would mean being away from parents. Thus, they look for excuses to avoid schools.

Symptoms:
The symptoms characteristic of school refusal behavior include

  1. Irritability, inflexibility, and anger.
  2. Nausea, headache, stomach ache, vomiting.
  3. Diarrhea.
  4. The affected child may show signs of separation anxiety.
  5. Sleep disturbance.
  6. Tantrums in the morning. 

Diagnosis and Treatment:

School refusal needs to be dealt with as early as possible since the longer the child stays away from school, the more difficult it will become for him/her to return to school.

  1. The Screen for Child Anxiety Related Emotional Disorders (SCARED).
  2. The Children's Manifest Anxiety Scale.
  3. The Child Behavior Checklist.

Parents, physician, and school authorities should together chalk out a plan to deal with the situation.

  1. Cognitive therapy can produce fruitful results.
  2. Any student subjected to bullying should bring it to the notice of their parents and teachers.
  3. Parents should not pressurize their child to over perform.

In case you have a concern or query you can always consult an expert & get answers to your questions!

2713 people found this helpful

5 Ways to Combat OCD!

Mrs. Sudeeptha Grama 92% (58 ratings)
Msc - Clinical and Counselling Psychology
Psychologist, Bangalore
5 Ways to Combat OCD!

OCD - It stands for obsessive compulsive disorder. This disorder is characterized by uncontrollable, unwanted and repetitive thoughts or behaviours. You can characterize it as OCD if your obsessive thoughts persist for more than an hour a day. There are over 1 million cases of OCD reported in India alone. There are two components to OCD - obsessions and compulsions. Obsessions are the repetitive thoughts that occur and compulsions are the urges you have to satisfy the obsessions. For example, a fear of being contaminated by germs is an obsession and washing your hands to the point it is pruning is the compulsion. Here are some ways you can combat OCD:

1. Practice relaxation techniques:

Stress can trigger symptoms or make them worse. Mindful meditation, yoga, deep breathing, and other relaxation techniques can help lower your overall stress and tension levels and help you manage your urges.

2. Face your fears:

Avoiding your fears make them seem scarier. Instead, expose yourself to you triggers and try to resist the urge to complete the compulsive behaviour.

3. Refocus your attention:

When you are experiencing OCD thoughts and urges, try shifting your thoughts to something else. It could be exercise, reading or listening to music among other things. Continue this for 15 minutes then reassess your urges.

4. Anticipate urges:

Anticipating the urges by creating a solid mental picture of you performing the act previously so that you do not go and do it again.

5. Create a worry period:

Rather than trying to suppress your obsessions, set aside one or two 10 minute periods in your day to worry about them. Consciously delay thinking about your obsessions until then.

7 people found this helpful

Behaviour Problems Among Children - Things Parents Should Know and Never Ignore!

Dr. Rakhi Anand 91% (294 ratings)
PhD - Clinical Psychology, Diploma in Clinical and Community Psychology, MA - Clinical Psychology, BA - Psychology
Psychologist, Delhi
Behaviour Problems Among Children - Things Parents Should Know and Never Ignore!

Diagnosis & Management of Behavioural Disorders in Children

Disruptive behavioural disorders are complicated and may include many different factors working in combination. For example, a child who exhibits the delinquent behaviours of Conduct Disorder may also have ADHD, Anxiety, Depression, and a difficult home life. 

Diagnosis methods may include:

  1. Diagnosis by a specialist: Paediatrician, Psychologist or Child Psychiatrist.
  2. In-depth Interviews with the parents, child and teachers.
  3. Behaviour check lists or standardised Questionnaires.
  4. A diagnosis is made if the child’s behaviour meets the criteria for disruptive behaviour disorders in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders from the American Psychiatric Association.

It is important to rule out acute stressors that might be disrupting the child’s behaviour. For example, a sick parent or victimising by other children might be responsible for sudden changes in a child’s typical behaviour and these factors have to be considered initially.

How can habit disorders affect behaviour?

Most children develop certain repetitive behaviours at an early age, but it is the frequency, persistence or its effects on the overall well-being of the child which could qualify it as a ‘Disorder’. These habits include

  1. Repetitive sucking of the thumb
  2. Biting of the nails
  3. Hitting his own self
  4. Pulling at his own hair
  5. Holding on to his breath just for the sake of it

This refers to the behavioural issues of your child which cause the child to misbehave more often; this can be due to a variety of reasons such as Improper Parenting, Persistent Family problems, child abuse or Neglect, or any other incident that has traumatised the child in the past, both psychological problems or Medical illnesses etc.

Preventive Measures:

  1. Respect Others Space - Your child may be very excited to tell you about some special event or happening in school, but teach him not to interrupt you when you are at work. He must learn to respect other people’s space and have patience while dealing with people. Otherwise, he would not be able to take rejections and thus be inconsiderate in his attitude.
  2. Adjustment with Peers - Monitor how he behaves with his playmates. Stop him when he happens to fight with his playmates or fights with them aggressively and teach him how exactly to behave with people.
  3. Firm Discipline - You should deal with stubbornness with a bit of high-handedness. Look at your child right into the eye and tell him what is expected of him. Be tough, but not rude.
  4. Balance Independence - Monitor his use of PCs, laptops and mobiles. Well, that doesn’t mean you need to loom over everything he does on his gadget, but do try to watch over the content whether it is inappropriate or not. But remember to never really pry and barge into his privacy. Respect that and you can still humour him.

Treatment of behavioural disorders in children

Untreated children with behavioural disorders may grow up to be dysfunctional adults. Generally, the earlier the intervention, the better the outcome is likely to be.  Treatment is usually multifaceted and depends on the particular disorder and various factors contributing to it, which may include:

  1. Parental education – For example, teaching parents how to communicate with and manage their children.
  2. Family therapy The entire family is helped to improve communication and problem-solving skills.
  3. Cognitive behavioural therapy – To help the child to control their thoughts and behaviour.
  4. Social training – The child is taught important social skills, such as how to have a conversation or play cooperatively with others.
  5. Anger management The child is taught how to recognise the signs of their growing frustration and given a range of coping skills designed to defuse their anger and aggressive behaviour. Relaxation techniques and stress management skills are also taught.
  6. Support for associated problems – For example, a child with a learning difficulty will benefit from professional support.
  7. Use of Reinforcement – Many children with behavioural disorders experience repeated failures at school and in their interactions with others. Encouraging the child to excel in their particular talents (such as sport) can help to build self-esteem using positive reinforcements both verbal and non-verbal.
  8. Medication – To help control impulsive behaviours if required so. If you wish to discuss about any specific problem, you can consult a psychologist.
3734 people found this helpful
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