Community Psychiatric Centers
Monroeville, Greensburg, Monessen, and Wilkinsburg Pittsburgh
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January 13, 2013

Reduce Your Child's Hitting, Biting, and Shoving

Written by Dr. John Carosso

Get them talking, not hitting

When hearing of toddlers and preschoolers becoming aggressive, the first question I ask is usually related to language; how well can the child communicate his or her frustration? It stands to reason that a child who has difficulty ‘using his words’ is more prone to hit or shove.

Recent Research

A new longitudinal study out of Pennsylvania State University found that children who had better language skills as toddlers expressed less anger by age 4; and were better-able to occupy themselves.

So what?

Treatment focus for aggressive toddlers and preschoolers needs to focus on improving communication skills. If your child is struggling with language and at times is also aggressive, ramp-up the speech/language sessions to both Private and County-based. Also, work with your behavioral–health staff at Community Psychiatric to utilize reminders, visual prompts, picture-cues, short-phrases, visual schedules, and star charts to facilitate communication and subsequent problem-solving. We've consistently seen excellent response to such an approach.

Don't hesitate to ask for help

Email me at or call the office at 1-877-899-6500. Also, for daily tips and suggestions, follow me on Facebook and Twitter!!

God bless.

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