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The treatment of aggressive behavior in a child, in cases where his aggressive behavior is persistent, must be submitted to a specialized professional. The type of treatment that will be used will depend on the result of the evaluation that is done. The first thing they will do is identify, through observations, talks and interviews, the antecedents (causes and reactions to frustration) and the consequences (what is gained from the aggression) of the aggressive behavior of the child.
Considering that the aggressive behavior of a child is a learned behavior and as such can be modified, the intervention of parents as well as teachers is very important. Physical punishment is not advisable in any of the cases because its effects are generally negative: aggressiveness is imitated and the child's anxiety increases. If we make an effort to change our child's aggressive behavior, and maintain patience and perseverance, we will surely solve the problem.
The psychologist Gloria Marsellach Umbert, author of the book Recipes of the psychologist in the network, defines some guidelines on how to solve the problem. According to her, a plan must be followed:
1 - Identify the type of behavior, that is, what exactly is our son doing. You have to be objective and specific in your answer. If the child kicks, screams, or in what way expresses his aggressiveness.
2- Record daily in a table, and for a week, how many times does the child apply aggressive behavior. Write down what caused the behavior. With which it will be necessary to record the reasons and the answers. Also note when aggressive attacks are most frequent.
3- Choose two objectives to modify behavior: weaken aggressive behavior and reinforce desirable alternative responses existing in the child's repertoire of behaviors or in the teaching of social skills. Examples:
- There are some conditions that provide a child with rewarding consequences for aggressive behavior. For example, if in the schoolyard, when the caregiver is not there, the child knows that by hitting his classmates, they will give him whatever he wants, he will have to put someone to control the game until it is no longer necessary.
- Reduce the child's contact with aggressive models. Show your child other ways to solve conflicts how dialogue, reasoning, norm setting, etc. If children see that the older ones try to solve problems calmly, they can imitate this way of acting.
- Parents should reduce the stimuli that provoke the behavior. Teach the child to remain calm in the face of a provocation.
- Reward your child when he or she plays cooperative and assertive play.
4- When the procedure you will use is determined, put the plan into practice. You should continue to record the frequency with which your child emits aggressive behavior in order to check whether the procedure used is being effective or not. Inform all adults who are part of the child's social environment of the chosen plan. Hold a relaxed and positive attitude and you will notice the progress. In the end, everyone will feel better.
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