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Old 02-04-2012, 06:51 PM   #1
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Starting to hit himself in the head

Has anyone gone through some kind of self harm with your kiddos.

Its fairly easy to predict when it will happen with my ds. He either didn't sleep well or is not feeling 100% and then anything stressful will cause him to hurt himself. The most common cause is if he does something wrong and is frustrated. Its increased in frequency here recently and intensity so I'm getting concerned. It's predictable, we know why, but I'm not sure how to prevent it or the best way to correct it.

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Old 02-05-2012, 09:13 AM   #2
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Re: Starting to hit himself in the head

Search me. My ds has been doing this since before we got a diagnosis. He scratches his face, smacks his head on things until he gets horrible bruises, hits himself when frustrated, slams his body in to things, and more recently has been trying to kill himself (in innocuous 6 year old ways, and yes, health professionals are aware). Sensory made it worse. It didn't get better once he was able to talk. We went through a phase where all we could do was restrain him because he was such a danger to himself and others. Thankfully its been a while since we have had to do that, and as an AP mommy, that was HARD. But what are you going to do? I have to keep him and his sisters safe. It's better now.

We did teach him "quiet hands" through millions of repetitions, and that sometimes gets him to stop for a bit. It's kind of programmed now, when he hears quiet hands he puts his hand to his sides. Also, sometimes very loud noises will startle himself out of what's going on so we can reach him. He gets in these modes where he seems to completely lose control and he is not aware of anything around him. If you can get to him, and get him to stop, then sometimes you can break the cycle. And sometimes you just have to let it go...
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Old 02-05-2012, 11:30 AM   #3
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Re: Starting to hit himself in the head

When Ben does it he is "in the zone" He just doesn't hear or see anything. I can dangle fruit snacks (always a fave and good for a semi-fit) and he doesn't see them. I remembered that I have an email to pscyhologist who used to go all around the state and help develop plans for kids/young adults that hurt themselves or others. When he lectured I was listening for a different reason. When I get to work Monday I will have to track down his email and pick his brain some.
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Old 02-05-2012, 11:30 AM   #4
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Re: Starting to hit himself in the head

When Ben does it he is "in the zone" He just doesn't hear or see anything. I can dangle fruit snacks (always a fave and good for a semi-fit) and he doesn't see them. I remembered that I have an email to pscyhologist who used to go all around the state and help develop plans for kids/young adults that hurt themselves or others. When he lectured I was listening for a different reason. When I get to work Monday I will have to track down his email and pick his brain some.
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Old 02-05-2012, 01:07 PM   #5
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Re: Starting to hit himself in the head

My son just has these tantrums where he just gets completely unresponsive and goes absolutely nucking futs. I got a call from the principle and an "incident" report at school Friday because he had a 3 hour tantrum and threw his desk over and almost hurt a kid. Generally, he's very sweet and kind and gentle, and very well behaved (if extremely immature), but he goes crazy every now and then, and you really cannot do anything to get him to stop, you just have to wait. His specialists are concerned that he has a serious mental illness, because most of the time he's "ok" but then he just loses it and talks in weird voices and does stuff that is kind of shocking. I've never found anything to be effective, except, sometimes, super loud noises. But he habituates really fast, so aside from a bullhorn nothing works for long. Never tried the bullhorn, BTW. That would look really bizarre and I think my other kids would end up with PTSD, LOL.
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Old 02-05-2012, 01:18 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Minniebees
My son just has these tantrums where he just gets completely unresponsive and goes absolutely nucking futs. I got a call from the principle and an "incident" report at school Friday because he had a 3 hour tantrum and threw his desk over and almost hurt a kid. Generally, he's very sweet and kind and gentle, and very well behaved (if extremely immature), but he goes crazy every now and then, and you really cannot do anything to get him to stop, you just have to wait. His specialists are concerned that he has a serious mental illness, because most of the time he's "ok" but then he just loses it and talks in weird voices and does stuff that is kind of shocking. I've never found anything to be effective, except, sometimes, super loud noises. But he habituates really fast, so aside from a bullhorn nothing works for long. Never tried the bullhorn, BTW. That would look really bizarre and I think my other kids would end up with PTSD, LOL.
Off topic but the dollar store sells mini air horns and they are LOUD!
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Old 02-06-2012, 08:42 PM   #7
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Re: Starting to hit himself in the head

DD doesn't do the hitting thing but she does bite herself, usually her hands. This blows my mind, because she bites herself so hard she bleeds. I would think that the pain of hurting yourself would stop the behavior, but clearly in cases like this it does not. We are working on redirecting the biting issue--she bites all the time, but only bites herself when she is upset. She is getting better about using super chews when she is not upset if you give her frequent reminders, but she does not really hear or see things when she is upset and cannot be redirected. I'm hoping though if we get her in the habit of using the super chews all the time maybe eventually she will switch over to them automatically when she is upset. Maybe this is wishful thinking! I don't really have advice to offer, just a friendly ear and best wishes. I know that it is frustrating and hard and sometimes lonely road and wanted to let you know that you're not alone. Good luck! We have also recently added a OT to my daughter's line-up, so I'm hoping that she will have some good ideas to help correct the problem.
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Old 02-07-2012, 08:21 AM   #8
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Re: Starting to hit himself in the head

My 4 year old started hitting his head on the floor/wall/window when he was around 2, out of frustration I guess, if he couldn't figure out a toy, or when he was in time out. He outgrew it for the most part, but will still either do that, slap himself, or bite himself occasionally. You wouldn't think they have that much to get aggravated about right?!
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Old 02-08-2012, 10:54 AM   #9
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My ds hits himself and bites himself. All we can do is hold him so he can't.
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