Bad habits in children
Perhaps no baby is complete without one or other bad habits. Some people chew their nails, someone sucking your thumb, someone twirling in his fingers a strand of hair, and someone even pulls out all the hair. There are habits that parents are embarrassed to discuss even with a psychologist. Meanwhile, all the habits one reason — they appear when the child is left alone with their fears, unable to Express them, to overcome.
The four year old goes to kindergarten only with his beloved stuffed dog. He will not part with it for a moment, and in moments of reverie or unrest begins to suck her paw. Numerous attempts by the caregiver to interest the child other toys nor to no avail, finding your next dog, baby covered with cold sweat and even begins to cry and shake. Clearly, in order not to bring the boy before the next attack, just leave it alone.
Mother claims not to remember that her son had such an affection. But with a toy he doesn’t leave at least the last two years. In conversation with the psychologist revealed that about two years ago mom went to work. Obviously, it happened then the transfer of the senses of the baby with mom on endangered thing. The child was afraid to be without my mom and the toy was always there. So he began to perceive it not as an inanimate object, but as a native person, as a friend, with whom it is impossible to leave.
I must say that in the younger preschool age children is just not able to understand what bad habit. On the contrary, thumb sucking, gnawing nails, and so brings them some comfort, relieves internal stress. For adults it should be a signal: the child something happens, he is full of anxiety and discomfort. Thumb sucking also indicates that the child cannot cope with the grieving process, it can not without the help of adults to progress to the next stage of development. He seeks to return to the infant state, when mom was around, comforted and protected from any danger.
In addition, the sucking of any item that talks about the child’s attempt to compensate for the lack of breastfeeding. It has long been observed that children who were breastfed at least six months, much less committed to the teats, bottles and the like, they are less likely to pull the fingers in his mouth and is easier to wean from bad habits. But “iskusstvennimi”, which from the first months of life was transferred to the mixture and squashes, until three or four years can’t part with the items, replacing them mother’s breast.
Trying to go back to an earlier age show habits rhythmic rocking or nodding his head. Child them-tireet movement, as if it rocked, it allows him to calm down and feel protected. By the way, the popularity of rocking chairs has its roots in this habit. Sometimes we young or old can’t solve their internal conflicts, need to simple movements comforted and reassured us.
A habit to pull hair (trichotillomania) occurs much less frequently, but it is based on the child’s attempt to attract attention. It begins with small things — trying to drown out the fear, the child tries to hurt me, pulls out one after the other hairs. He is distracted by this activity, the fear goes away. And in a child’s mind gradually formed a conditioned reflex connection — pull hair, fear will disappear. Now the child feels uncomfortable, if NOT tearing my hair out. Unfortunately, this habit sometimes becomes pathological form, when the baby’s body does not remain even a single hair. It occurs in children of preschool and younger school age, and rarely goes away by itself.
Another habit almost no age restrictions — biting and gryzenia nails (onychophagia). To obkatyvalisj can not only nails and adjacent pieces of leather, and children (and sometimes adult) quietly swallows them, without feeling any embarrassment and discomfort.
It is believed that in the process of obgrizannie nail child gives vent to his inner fears and tensions and have fun. Just like thumb sucking, this habit is formed on an automatic level and it is very difficult to get rid of.
Blinking, coughing, giggling — all these symptoms also most often automatically the child’s attempt to get rid of internal stresses. Many fears can lead to the child’s chronic stress. Any stress has both psychological and physiological side. In this case it is muscle tension. A child experiences stress during the day, accumulates muscle tension, which then begins to manifest in muscle tics. By the way, to distinguish such manifestations of the syndrome of neurotic movements (this is a more serious violation, with a basis of one or another neurological disorder) on the basis of episodicity. If blinks and coughs in the evening the child more than the morning —so there is really a mental strain.
General advice to parents trying to save children from bad habits — in any case forbid them to do IT! Through prohibition, expressed, as a rule, loud, emotionally, in a very categorical way, you only reinforce the habit, commit it to the attention of the child. In addition, you Willy-nilly you let him know that you are on different sides of the barricades. You want to take away from him what brings him pleasure, allows you to go into a state of comfort. Many times it is noticed that the more often the child pulls the more he tries to stick his fingers in his mouth. There is no conviction, no punishment. We need to understand causes to enroll your child in this way, to offer him in return for less harmful ways to calm down.
Try to find out what fears or anxieties plagued the child. Provide more attention to him at home, find joint exercises, interesting for both of you. Don’t forget many times during the day to tell him that you love him, hug the kid, Pat him on the head. In any case, do not discuss neither with him nor with other people in his presence his habit, did not say his actions aloud. Such verbalization only will contribute to the consolidation of habits.
Often the cause of bad habits becomes excessive parental demands, the preponderance of parental expectations compared with the real possibilities and abilities of the child. Think. So whether you need to teach him to read to four years? And is it really necessary in the first school to combine a swimming pool, sport club and the chess club?
Another common mistake a parent: it is believed that, in order to wean the baby to bite your nails, they should be spread with mustard. It’s hard to say who is the author of this highly questionable advice, but his “gratitude” to him, perhaps today will be able to make thousands of grown children. But the cases where it helped, perhaps, that count not so much.
In General, picking and banning can only lead to the fact that instead of one bad habit, the child will be another. Much better would be, if you try every time again notice the attempt of the little finger in the mouth or pull the hair, to offer him something exciting that can distract his attention. Will be nice if you provide children with interesting and exciting games throughout the day. When he has something to do, and fears will vanish like smoke, bad habits will go away by themselves. However, keep in mind that the attenuation of the bad habits usually takes about the same time, how long was the habit itself.