Saturday, July 9, 2011

Causes of Children's Behavioural Problems

Generally, my approach to assessing behavioural problems in kids (or adults) is to assess the causes ie
  1. Is it their personality or genetic trait? (unfortunately we cannot really change it but certainly we can try to understand it and work with it).  One of the Eastern Philosophy is that, if you are a peach then always a peach.  You can add syrup to it, you can poach it, you add flavour enhancers to it but it is still a peach.  The moral of the story is that you can still improve it, although you cannot "change" its core nature.
  2. Is it their environment? ie their interactions with the parents/teachers/school/friends or other environmental factors.
  3. Is it due to any medical problems ie Are they physically unwell? Do they have a hearing problem?.........your Doctor will need to rule these out.
  4. Is there any specific mental health issues like ADHD, Anxiety, Depression, Asperger's, Autism, Learning Difficulties, Oppositional Defiant Disorder (ODD), Conduct Disorders, Sensory Processing Disorders etc....(careful not to "overdiagnose" here).
  5. For teenagers and adults....Is there any alcohol/drug use?
From a Doctor's perspective, we need to carefully assess the above and manage as appropriate.

Dr Vin Tran Family Doctor

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