Head Banging

Kelly Smith - posted on 03/04/2009 ( 6 moms have responded )

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My 4 year old has been "banging" his head prior to falling asleep and when he first wakes up since he was 18 months old. He has actually gotten a little better. He used to bang his head on our laps or on soft furniture when he was frstrated, but he doesn't seem to do that anymore. I've read up on it and from what I understand, it is a way for him to calm himself. I just wanted to know if any body else has a child that does this and if they have any input on how we can help modifiy this behavior(or if it is something we should just leave alone). Thank you for your time! Kelly

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Kelly Smith - posted on 03/23/2009

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Just wanted to thank everyone for their input. It is all very helpful! It is so nice to have people that have an understanding of what you are going through.....I've worked in Therapy for years, but it is so different when it is your child. I'm still doing some soul searching and trying to focus on what's best for him(and our family). Again, thanks for the help!

Michelle - posted on 03/22/2009

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My son has done this and does still do it.  He's 4, and according to the OT it's a way for him to get the pressure he needs through his head to help calm himself.  We have done scalp massages, joint compressions, etc to help with this.  The main thing that helped was letting him wear a hat.  He will wear a cheap cowboy hat from Wal Mart (toy section) or his winter knit cap.  If that doesn't work you could make your own weighted hat (my DS does fine without weights) by sewing in some weights used for fishing on a knit cap.  HTH!

Christian - posted on 03/21/2009

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It's something he will mostly outgrow. My son did it until he switched to rocking at age 5. It is disturbing but as long as he isn't hurting himself it's ok. These kids have trouble soothing themselves, so as he learns more acceptable ways to self soothe it will be easier to see for you. Just give him hugs when he will accept them and the rest will start to fall into place eventually. Best Wishes!

Kathleen - posted on 03/10/2009

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My daughter went through this too. Our OT taught me to massage her head, applying a fair amount of pressure. She actually enjoys me sqeezing her head with my hands. Snug fitting hats have also helped her get some of that extra input she needs to feel on her head.

Jennifer Miller - posted on 03/05/2009

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Hey, my son used to bang as well, not so much his head but his whole body. Doing joint compressions and other OT techniques has really really improved things for him. When I was in High School I used to babysit a boy who would really bang his head. A lot. But that was a long time ago before SPD was really known.



Do you see an OT? If not, write me back and I'll send you info on joint compressions.!

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