My son bangs his head against the floor anyone else out there with the same problem?

Saskia - posted on 09/30/2009 ( 53 moms have responded )

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Hey my now 19 months old son bangs his head against the floor when he throws a fit. He also does it when he hurts himself on the table or anywhere else just then he bangs his head against whatever he hurt himself on. And I'm not talking a quick little bang, he proper bangs his head several times until it hurts.

Just wondering if there is any other mum with the same problem out there?!

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Crystal - posted on 11/19/2012

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My 21 month old son does the same thing when he gets mad. He will throw a fit and bang his head so hard and so many times he will leave several bruises and bumps on his head, it doesn't matter where, he will smash his head on the corner of walls and his crib. He also slaps and punches himself in the head as well when he is angry or frustrated. I have no idea what to do at this point because his temper tantrums last a very long time and just get worse if I continue to ignore him. I worry about him hurting himself very badly. I will ignore him for a half an hour to an hour and he doesn't stop. Does anyone have any advice?

User - posted on 03/25/2012

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My son did this when he was young too. It was a sign of frustration--not knowing what to do with all that pent up frustrated, angry energy.

Usually kids who do this tend to be, by temperment, on the passionate, emotional and sensitive side. Those qualities are great and can lead, if guided well with conscious efortful parenting, to an exceptional, thoughtful and engaged child. You may want to prepare yourself for a child that may have more ups and downs then other kids. A kind, loving, sensitive and sometimes firm approach can be very helpful. Educating your child on their temperment traits, pro's and cons early, is a great way to help them work on those aspects that can be hard socially.



My son is a popular kid because he engages, but he gets into more scrapes because his level of engagement is all in. Someone who engages fully has to navigate social dynamics more which can be hard at younger ages.



Do not ignore the head banging. Reflect for your child that you notice how frustrated they are and give them pillows to hit or something else. This may take time and patience. If you only see it as a way to get attention, that view point can defeat the help and education your child needs. If they need attention it may be for a good reason--guidance. Lovingly help guide them by letting them know what you see and understand, and help find better ways of acknowledging and expressing those feelings. This temperment requires more parenting but the rewards in the end are limitless. These are the qualities of leaders and dream makers!



Good Luck.

P.S. I am a Child Psychologist.

Natalie - posted on 04/22/2011

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ur not alone My Daughter is 17 months old an does the same thing shes been doing it for the last couple of months i hate seeing her do it but she does it if shes doesent get her own way or if told off its hard not 2 react 2 the head bangin on the floor an im wondering why does she do it,

Jonah - posted on 01/24/2013

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hi we have same problem my son is 1 year old and 1 month he was so active from time to time he runs so fast but suddenly he use to bang his head,im afraid it cause him a brAIN damage soon when he grew up.plss anybody can help me how to prevent my son away from banging his head.

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Racheal - posted on 01/08/2014

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I realize this post is a little old. But..THANK YOU for asking this I was beginning to worry!

Fchs_chick2009 - posted on 11/26/2013

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My 3 year old does the same thing. its horrible :( he usually does it when he doesnt get his way. He'll just throw himself to the floor n bang it really hard 3-5 times. I've asked my doctor about it n she says its normal but in my opinion...its not normal. it scares me everytime my son does it....he will even do it when we r grocery shopping to n its just embarrassing bcuz everybody is looking at us.
Does anybody know what to do? Ppl say i should go get him checked out but i just don't know what to do n i feel so bad for him :(

Karleena - posted on 11/14/2012

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I have an 11 and half month old and he started banging his head at about 9 months, every temper tantrum he falls over his legs and starts banging his head to the floor. my 19 year old when he was 2 years old would run head onto the walls hitting his head and he did several times, I still don't know why. And my twin boys thought they were funny standing at the wall smaking their head into the wall. Sometimes I wonder if it's a boy thing, as my girls didn't do this.

Stacey - posted on 11/03/2012

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my little boy does that has well but probs not has bad has ure lad but it is very worrying im scared incase he does some real damage

Gwen - posted on 03/26/2012

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Karen Blumberg - Your post is great. My son did this and is now coming up for 13. I gave him strong guidance, love and affection and now he is a highly intelligent, highly motivated popular young man. He IS sensitive and emotional at times but these are qualities that I value in him and seeing him develop into this confident successful young man is indeed reward for those worrying times when he banged his head etc. xxx

Natalie - posted on 04/25/2011

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my mum and my oldest daughter did this and they both did it 1) out of frustration and 2) for attention i.e a cuddle thankfully none of my other children did this but my oldest daughter would get down and bang her head away she would even find a wall to do it on lol

Hayley - posted on 05/19/2010

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My kid does it all the time! It's so annoying... I want to yell at her but our ped says unless she's really aiming to hurt herself let it go so she learns not to throw tantrums

Heather - posted on 05/16/2010

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Yes my son does the same thing. Doctor said he would out grow this. Mostly due to frustration at not being able to tell us things. Just move him to a softer area

Rebecca - posted on 04/14/2010

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Headbanging? Someone said that he can't hurt his brain...are you serious? Of course they can. For anyone who wants to walk away and let them do it, I suggest maybe putting a helmet on your child! Yes they can hurt themselves, and you could either pick them up and hold them through the tantrum or put them in a crib or playpen like some others suggested.

Laura - posted on 04/14/2010

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My daughter does the head banging, she stated when she was about 18 months and still continues.She always has bruises on her head from this. I have learned to ignore this and now she has moved onto making little fists and hitting her legs, and when she still doesn't get attention she will pull her sisters hair. She's so sweet until she doesn't get her way then all hell breaks loose.

Meghan - posted on 04/10/2010

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my ex-mother -in-law used to tell me that when My then-husband was little he did the same thing and it was so bad that the pediatrician actually told her to help him bang his head ONE TIME ONLY and then keep walking on by. As soon as he knew he was getting NO sympathy from the action he immediately stopped. And he never did it again...

Farrah Leah - posted on 04/05/2010

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hello there!my son whos 2 yrs old now did that when he's just 16mos.i think its normal to all toddler in doing that,it's their way of their comfort zone,everytime they are uneasy.all we have to do is to watch them and be alert so that it wont hurt themselves.

Amina - posted on 04/02/2010

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my three two year olds also do the same thing, i have a spare travelcot which i call the naughty bed and when they are having a tantrum i pick them up and put them in there they are then safe and away from anything they can bang there head on i hope this helps.

Emma - posted on 03/31/2010

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Hi, Glad to see that im not alone on this. my 2 year old son still dose this but thankfully not as much as before. i also noticed he dose it when he is cross or frustrated,
i have managed to get him to head butt the couch or his pillow which are much softer options than the wall or floor, i was told when he starts to articulate more that it will subside as part of the frustration is not being abel to get me to understand why he so cross.

Gwen - posted on 03/06/2010

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This does seem to be a boy thing! My almost 11 year old did this as a toddler. It was very distressing to me so I know how you're feeling. It is just an attention thing though. It does seem cruel and is very hard to do but the old rule applies - ignore the bad and praise the good. When he starts this you should walk away and pick up a toy or something else he likes (NOT whatever he was throwing a fit over!) and just play with it by yourself. He will be confused at first, but that distracts him from his tantrum and makes him want to join you pl;aying happily. That worked for mine and he's a big healthy happy pre-teen now! Good luck! x

Lisa - posted on 03/05/2010

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oh god yes its nice to know that its not just my child that does that! the amount of times that i have been to doctors with my son with bust lips and black eyes is ridiculous the doctor was starting not to beleive me wen i kept taking him in and explaining to her wat he did but luckily he decided to have a tantrum in front of the doctor lol

Kari - posted on 03/02/2010

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Lily pulls her hair out.... when she's mad or upset they all have their little fits..just be careful..lol

Brittany - posted on 01/22/2010

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My son is 22 months and he does somewhat the same thing, when he is mad or doesn't get his way he will throw himself on the floor and bang his head. He has also started banging his head on the wall. I spoke to the doctor and she said at this age its normal but if he continues much past the terrible twos then it can become a concern. So I just watch him make sure he can't hurt himself and let him throw his fit.

Collette - posted on 01/22/2010

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Hi,
My son is 22months and he has just started to stop banging his head on the floor or pole or table or chair. he still does it when he is throwing a tantrum but i put a pillow underneath him if i can catch him in time other wise i put my foot under his head so he cant bang the floor. he used to do it all the time but now its when he is really tired and in a bad mood. i am hoping it will stop soon as i dont want my youngest starting it.

[deleted account]

yes,it scares me.....i tell her 2 stop,she keeps on.....she does it when shes mad!,ive asked her doctor,she says its normal,it sure doesnt feel,or,look normal!,she says that its cause she doesnt get her way and shes frustrated.......who knows?

Regina - posted on 01/18/2010

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LOL...my son does it tooo! I was reallly worried bc he does it until he has big nasty bruises on his forehead, but the Dr said its a phase and he wont hurt himself... I still worried thou until my husband's mama told me my husband did it as a child too. They took him to the Dr and he was fine as well. Must just be inheriting it from his dad. Dont worry about it! :) Soon it will passss... we hope!

Lisa - posted on 01/14/2010

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my daughter does the same but not as bad she will do it if i tell her no and stop her from doing it she has done it to me at the mall aswell and i felt like shit because i didnt help her i tryed to and she screamed and i left her on the floor and she was banging her head on the ground i walked away and my mum grabbed her i felt so embrassed and ashamed

Amy Mira - posted on 01/12/2010

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Hi all,

It seems like there are huge number of babies that does the same thing as my little princess who is 22 months today! She used to banged her head on the floor to show us her anger (i think when she is ard 18-21months) but luckily that for the past 1 month, I didn't see her doing that anymore... But banging head to floor no more, but she is now into crying out loud to get our attention (which we know it is fake cry coz she can stop immediately and smile at us once we give her what she wants).. We tried several time and we knew she is using that to get what she wants, so now we don't bother with her crying anymore but just need to bear with the loud crying volume...

Happy parenting!

Ashley - posted on 01/12/2010

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Not alone. My son also bangs his head when he is throwing a tantrum, and it's not good. It scares me because he is hurting himself and you want him to stop without giving in. I suggest putting him in his crib or playpen and leaving him for a couple minutes. If he associates these places with sleep or quiet time hopefully it will help him calm down. I also have stopped my son when he does his banging, to look him in the eyes and tell him to Stop and I hug him and hold him until he calms down.

Lorena - posted on 01/04/2010

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Hi Saskia.
As you and I can see we aren't the only mommies dealing with this.
I now that you posted this a few months back, so I wanted to know how its going with this??
Quin uses the wall. At first he would though himself back, then he would hit himself on the head with both hands. Now he uses the wall. I asked his doctor about it, and she said a couple things about it. She says its not uncommon. The reason could be attention, or he is just frustrated that he can't communicate what he wants. Quin is such a sweet boy, and he doesn't hit other kids, or takes toys from them. He just gets frustrated. He is talking more and more so its getting better. The last time he hit his head was probably a month ago. The point is that its pretty common and that they grow out of it once they start talking more and more. If it doesn't stop then talk to a children's therapist. At least that was the advice we got.

Brittany - posted on 01/03/2010

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My son preston is 21 months old now, we have gone through this and still do at times. What I have been told is that they are frustrated and do not know how to deal with the feelings. I have taught my son to make a "mad" face and told him to hit the pillow instead of his head. Of coarse this doesn't happen over night but it has started to help.

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my 22month old girl does this alot, if she doesnt get her own way, not enough attention, hurts herself exc: she's always got bruises on her forehead from when she's chucked a tantie. it drives me insane. but i try to ignore her when its safe enough to do so. currently im trying to control her screaming but when i tell her to be quiet she chucks a massive tantrum and always ends up hurting herself

Sarah - posted on 11/14/2009

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My 21 month old daughter bangs her head on the ground a good two or three times when I tell her "no" or yell at her for something. It's frustration and an inability to express herself but I actually tend to laugh at her. It hurts so she stops after two or three times and starts to cry because it hurts. I just let her do it and get it out of her system so she can see the consequences of it..a headache. She's learning to express herself differently now. I still think it's a funny way to express herself. My other two didn't do it that way!

Kristy - posted on 11/01/2009

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My little guy does this. He also falls straight back from a standing position when he gets mad. I don't want him to hurt himself. I don't know how to stop it.
My guess is it's just a phase and I hope he out grows it very soon!

Kim - posted on 10/31/2009

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Hi we use to have similar problem wiv my daughter she use to bang her head on anything in site we worry at 1st but realised it was frustration that she wanted something but she couldnt talk so we didnt no,nw wen she throws a tantrum she slaps doors throws things around and screams so i ask her questions like would u like a banana she stops smiles laughs and goes to kitchen door,i hope this will help you.

Kimberley - posted on 10/28/2009

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My son does it too!!! He also does it when its gettin close to bed time. He will go to the door and hit his head on it untill we open the door the he goes right to the fridge for his night time bottle...

Missy - posted on 10/25/2009

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This is a tough one and a hard one for moms to watch. He is likely doing it out of frustration- he can't say the words he wants to express the feelings he has, so he finds other ways to get it out. He won't do any damage to his brain. The biggest issue that comes from this, though, is that he will see that it gets a reaction and it may become something he does because he knows it will get a rise out of you. So my best advice is to do your best to not let your fear/stress show on your face. Remain calm when you talk to him and really, if it were hurting him, he wouldn't do it. So try to ignore it if you can. Easier said than done, i know! Hang in there!

Catherine - posted on 10/25/2009

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hello, ive got a 19month old daughter and she also bangs her head in tantrums, her head is constantly coverdin bruises. the weird thing about it is she dosent cry when she is doing it, after she has fin she still wont cry !! i get scared that she is really going to hurt herself so i just give her what she wants to save the tantrums, does any 1 no how to stop it without giving in to them ?? xx

Jenny - posted on 10/22/2009

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My daughter used to do this, floor, wall, anything. It was basically a sign of frustration with her. If she banged her head on a door, she'd smack it there again and ended up with some right bruises. When we realised what she was doing we could spot the signs and get her in her playpen out of harm's way. She did this when she was younger about 8-13 months. Now she can talk she seems to have stopped. Probably because she can express her frustrations verbally. It's usually now a very high-pitched squeal followed by a loud "silly door" or "naughty floor" and she falls over less now of course except when she's very tired. Again we put her in her playpen then too. It is scary when you see it though

Kelly - posted on 10/07/2009

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My son bangs his head, too. But not just in anger/frustration. I think he does it to get a reaction out of us. He laughs when he does it! He's been doing this for several months now.

http://www.babycenter.com/0_head-banging...

My concerns made me google head banging and I felt a little better about it.

Niki - posted on 10/06/2009

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I also have a daughter that does not bang her head but bites herself in anger. She will bite her hand or her finger when she is angry and is not getting her way. At first I was horrified when she started doing this, but I soon discovered that she was doing this for attention and a reaction. So, I stopped reacting to it and I have noticed that her biting behavior has significantly decreased. Im sure its something that our children will grow out of, but it sure is scary to watch when it happens!

Bee Er - posted on 10/06/2009

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Recently I have noticed that my daughter bites her left palm below thumb when she wants to express her anger. She bites it pretty hard until there are bite marks leaving on her palm. I was a bit concern about it. But after reading all the posts here, I am also relieved that she is not the only one, just that she expresses it in a different way.

Michelle - posted on 10/05/2009

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Us too... I thought my son was being weird. It freaked me out at first. I'm relieved to know Chris isn't the only one.

Jenny - posted on 10/05/2009

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Well i dont have a lil boy that does it my Daughter was doing it but not just on the floor or walls she would do it on everything and she banged her head so bad but she missed the forhead and hit her mouth and chipped her two front teeth so bad they have started to decay and we have to take her in to get them fixed. Needless to say she hasnt done it sence!

Ricci - posted on 10/05/2009

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totally, my son will search for a spot to bang his head! He gets mad . . . looks around. . . picks his spot and the bangs. he'll hit the floor, table, wall. . . I now just put him in his playpen(baby jail) untill he cools off. It seems to be getting better. The hitting has really slowed. I do not talk to him after he hits his head. Just righ away put him in his play pen and walk away untill he stops crying.

Let me know!

Kelly - posted on 10/05/2009

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Hi there, my son does this as well. Only not the floor, he has a specific spot on the wall and if he doesn't get his way, he goes to that spot and bangs his head. I am normally a ignore the tantrum person, but I couldn't ignore it because it started right after he had a bad fall from a chair onto a concrete garage floor. So I didn't want him to bang is big black and blue bump on the wall and make it worse. So what I did was to distract him, not by giving him what he was throwing the tantrum about, but with something completely different. It seemed to have worked because he doesn't bang his head during his tantrums very often any more.



I find it kind of funny that we are all talking about boys!!! Good luck to everyone, hopefully this phase for our boys passes quickly!

Jocelyn - posted on 10/04/2009

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ah...yes. i read your post and smiled, not because it's cute but because our 18 month old boy does the very same thing. i've told him not to do it because he will just hurt himself. that seems to have lessen the actions but i think for my boy it's a way of dealing with his anger or frustration. i'm hoping that once he gains more words he'll be able to tell me instead of resorting to physical action. he also goes into a corner and cries when he doesn't get his way. hoping it's just a phase that will soon pass. ;)

Sarah - posted on 10/01/2009

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Hey Saskia, you are not the only one with this problem, my son Dylan is 18 months old now and he also bangs his head against the floor in a temper tantrum until it hurts, i am totally convinced that he does it for the attention as i tend to ignore tantrums and obviously if he hurts himself i am going to give him some attention..... i have started now though to try and ignore the 'HEAD BANGING' as it just gives him what he wants, hopefully he will soon learn that i am not going to give in and by hurting himself, that is all he is doing..... hurting himself as i am not interested in the temper! Obviously keep an eye out when the 'banging' is going on just to be sure that no real damage is done but otherwise... just ignore it!

Good luck xx

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