To know how to stop aggressive behaviour in your children, You should know what anger and aggression means. We all feel anger and aggression sometimes, the same is with children. We Adults have more control over our behaviour than children do. Children are very energetic and sometimes they direct this energy toward violent behaviour such as kicking, biting, or hitting. Sometimes the most obedient children appear to be aggressive. Little quantity of pushing and fighting is seen and usual in all children. It becomes a problem for the children when aggression becomes a way of solving their problems. Aggression in many cases is deep-rooted in the children’s developing nervous systems. It is one of the first responses of frustration, which a baby learns. It is common for children to act out before they learn to speak, but after a certain age, it may be symptoms of medical conditions or life circumstances. Aggressive children are distressed and most of the time upset, it is also difficult to calm them. These behaviours create more problems for the aggressive child; they are often judged as “disobedient” or “bad” and are punished frequently.

Cause of Aggression.

After they learn to communicate, if the children of the ages above three, display aggression, it may be because they have never learned any other ways of communicating or solving their problems. It can be one or all of the below listed causes of aggressive behaviours:

• Difficulty in communicating properly
• Reflecting parent’s or other’s aggressive behaviours
• Over-stimulation
• Absence of regular routine
• Excessive rage or anger
• Self-defense
• Tiredness
• Lack of love and caring
• Found in a stressful situation
• Medical or Mental illness like mood disorder, psychotic illnesses, ADHD or Conduct Disorder.

To start with, you can see if any of the above-described causes brings out the aggressive behaviour in your child. Know and learn about the factors that trigger aggression, as much as you can. It will help you largely in the next act out of aggression from your children. It is parent’s duty to help children develop judgment, self-discipline, and the ability to express their feelings in proper ways.

How to stop aggressive behaviour in your children.

The core of treating aggression is to find out first, what is causing it. Parents should start asking questions to themselves like, why is the child behaving aggressively? What situation is contributing the aggressive behaviours? What can I do? After you get some answers, follow below steps to eliminate aggressive behaviour from child’s life.

• Be firm and consistent.

Aggression is a lack behaviour and obedience. Children should know what is and what is not allowed. Set proper rule and let everyone who are often around the children know about it, and consequences of breaking it. Immediate and consistent intervention every time your children are aggressive is necessary for them to understand their wrong behaviour.

• Teach your children the art of self-control.

Children do not know how to control themselves, parents have to teach them how to behave and stay disciplined. Tell them that kicking, hitting and biting are bad. Do not shout while you say this. Just be firm and say, “We don’t bite”. They need to be taught not to kick, hit, or bite whenever they feel like it. Teach them to think before acting.

• Don’t confuse your children’s aggression with ‘toughness’ and ‘bravery’.

In some homes, aggressiveness is considered as toughness and bravery. Don’t use the word “tough” to compliment a child, even if he or she is being one. Even though toughness is good but little children confuse it and they feel kicking and hitting will help them winning.

• Do not raise your hand to discipline your children.

Avoid physical punishment, if Parents hit their children as punishment, children will believe hitting is the correct way to handle anyone who does not obey them. Physical punishments can deep root aggressiveness in your children.

• Don’t be aggressive yourself.

Parents should control their own behaviour and temper. Children learn and mirror behaviour of their parents. if you are aggressive, physical or angry in front of your child, chances are less that children will grow up as calm and self-controlled. Try to express anger in calmer way and your children will follow your footprints.

• Choose your neighborhood wisely.

Many aggressive children are a result of growing in violent homes and neighbourhoods. Research have shown that the level of aggression in children could be related to the level of danger in their neighbourhoods. Choose a neighborhood, that is calmer and have decent people living in it. If you stay in a violent neighbourhood, consider relocating.

• Take your child away.

Many times parents have to intervene and take children out of a specific state of affairs to help them gain control over their emotions. For Example: If you are out at your relative’s place and your child is having tantrums. “We don’t shout and scream, if you don’t stop we will leave.” If your child does not stop, do what you warned, leave. You can also give your children a time away, alone in a quiet place to gain their control back. Place your child in a room alone or ask them to stand in the corner (1 minute/year of age).

• Ask your children’s school teacher about their behaviour.

Your child can also put a show of his or her aggression in school, most of the time it is a part of how children get along. Screaming and running in a hallway is normal misbehavior, let the school handle it, but if your children is hitting and biting other children in school more often, it’s time to intervene. Explain the same set of rule you have made to control your children’s aggression to the teacher, ask him/her to follow them, so that the rules are consistent both in house and school. Keep checking with the teacher regularly to make sure that the behaviour is improving.

• Learn how to calm your Child’s Anger.

You can defuse anger in children with little brief talks that calms them out. You can say, “Even I get angry many times, but you see how calmly I handle the situation.” Teach your children {deep breathing} to calm themselves. When you are planning to go out, explain your children calmly that if they won’t behave properly, You will leave the movie theater and will go for a movie without them next time.

• Educate your children how bad is Aggression for them.

Look for a calm moment and explain your children in a steady voice that those hitting, biting, kicking, and other aggressive behaviours are wrong. For children of 1 & 2 years of age, just hold them firmly and say “Don’t bite, biting is bad.” Don’t get tired even if you have to repeat these rules multiple times. Your children will get it, just be consistently firm every time you see your children behaving aggressively.

• Reward when your children try to control their anger.

Reward your children’s effort to be non-aggressive. Let them know that you are proud of them; this will develop a sense of pride in themselves, which is very helpful in combating aggression.

“Parents should realize that children don’t always want to attack others. They would rather have fun and play. Parents should teach children ways to handle their conflicts, which rejects revenge, aggression and retaliation. The foundation of such method is love”