All children go through emotional struggles. Feeling happy, sad, confused, or angry is normal. However, certain events may have a significant impact on the life and emotions of a child. Parents and guardians must learn to differentiate normal from abnormal behaviors. With the help of behavioral therapy experts like Courtney Scott, MD, DO, you can help your child cope.
If you are wondering whether your child needs behavioral therapy, keep the following factors in mind;
1. Their Age
How old is your child? Are they old enough to benefit from it? In most cases, behavioral problems start when a child is at least two. Children under that age are unlikely to need behavioral therapy.
Think about the environment where your child acts out. You may notice that their behavior gets worse under certain situations and environments. If, for example, they act out at home, you may need to adjust the family dynamics.
It is also common for children to experience behavioral problems after a change of environment. This includes; when they move to a new home, after the loss of a loved one, or after divorce. Even though some kids cope without any trouble, others need professional help.
3. Development Level
All children are different. Even at the same age, certain children may develop faster than others. Think about a child’s level of development before seeking professional help. Think about their general social skills and intelligence. Their development level may affect their behavior.
Signs That You Need Help
If your child has behavioral problems that last a week or more, you need professional help. Usually, they may have disruptive or aggressive behavior. Some of the most common signs of a behavioral disorder include;
- Increased kicking, biting, or hitting
- Trying to damage property
- Banging their head or self-injury
- Disrespect and disregard for authority
- Skipping school
- Poor performance in school
- Mood swings
- Frequent nightmares
- Engaging in sexual activity
You need emergency help if your child is trying or threatening to hurt others or themself.
Even though parenting can be difficult, you don’t need to do it alone. If you are unsure about certain behavioral traits, compare notes with your family and friends. Even though every child is different, speaking with other parents can help you know what to expect. Asking questions about the mental health of your child is nothing to be ashamed about.
If you realize that your child has behavioral issues, do not be afraid. Even though it can be an overwhelming and scary experience, you can get help. When you schedule an appointment, a mental health professional will analyze the symptoms, give a diagnosis, and provide the relevant treatment for your child.
Are you looking for a behavioral therapist for your child? You have many options. However, some professionals are better than others. Choose one who has experience in treating children. They should be licensed and committed to the job. The professional you choose must be easily accessible and willing to answer all your questions about their practice.