Ron Huxley Responds: This repost from Brain Blogger outlines how children who are chronically aggressive at children has increased risks of health issues later in life. The most obvious reason for this is that angry children turn out to be angry adults, which has serious social and health costs. The 15-year longitudinal study revealed that aggressive lifestyles led to increase drug use, alcohol dependency, injuries and overall poor health. Anger takes a toll on our lives!
The blog states: “Young children can be physically aggressive, owing to a combination of instinct, temperament, cultural and social influences, and (sometimes) not getting what they want. But, by the time most kids reach preschool age, they have learned to control their aggression with coping skills and relational techniques. However, children who do not learn to regulate aggressive behavior are at risk for physical and mental health issues, as well as serious patterns of aggression and violence, as adults.”
Children have to learn social skills. They will hit, bite, or knock other children down as a very primal solution to who “gets to play the toy” or any other challenging social situation. Parents have the responsibility to model appropriate social behavior and teach children common social skills.
Homes with lots of stress and conflict can make teaching children how to get along with others as they look for a release valve for their anxiety. This can turn inward or outward depending on the temperament of the child. The solution to this, while not always simple, is to have healthier marriages and improve family communication.
How have you managed anger in children? What tips can you share on teaching social skills?
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