Head Banging... Help? — The Bump
December 2013 Moms

Head Banging... Help?

Hi everyone.

Quick update on Noah and Life: I haven't posted in a while, we've been crazy busy (moved, lots of business with Noah's health and early intervention and stuff) Things have been going really well for us the last few months, the shaking has all but stopped (we're at like 1 episode, maybe two a month). DH got a promotion, things have just in general gotten better in a lot of ways.

Anyway, Noah has started banging his head. I haven't said anything about it on the facebook page for him because I don't want to get any judgey comments or attitude from family. (He already gets treated differently because of the hospitalizations and different issues he's had.) But the banging started like a month and a half ago with him headbutting people. Now he's doing it when he get frustrated (like if I have to put him down to go to the bathroom, or if he can't climb out of the playpen, or if you aren't feeding him fast enough). He will headbutt crib bars, playpen rails, and the floor. It's gotten worse over the last week, and I think he's hitting pretty hard because it's starting to bruise slightly. All the advice I'm finding online about it suggests ignoring the behavior or putting them in their playpen or something when they do it, but that just leads to him doing it more because he's still not getting what he wants. I am at a loss here.

Does anyone else here have a kid who headbutts things? Any advice on how to get him to stop? I mentioned it to the NP at the ped's office the other day and she didn't really say much about it. I will be bringing it up to the developmental specialist with Early Intervention when I see them next week. I worry that maybe this goes along with all the other neuro/neuromuscular/genetic crap we are dealing with with him.
Isabelle born via emergency c-section after her heart stopped 04.29.10
asthma, astigmatism, amblyopia, allergies, tongue and maxillary ties

Noah born via RCS 12.09.13
14q11.2 duplication, receptive language and adaptive behavior delays
multiple health concerns under evaluation
follow him here: www.facebook.com/lovefornoah

Re: Head Banging... Help?

  • I was thinking about you recently and wondering how Noah is. I don't post here much anymore thanks to the FB migration and the crap that happened last month. 

    Giuliana occasionally does this. I've read that it's just a sensation thing for them. I usually ignore her and she stops doing it after a day or so. If the NP isn't worried, he'll probably grow out of it is my guess. 
  • LO does this too. She does it when she's mad. If I tell her no, she will either hit me or bang her head on me. It's the worst. I don't know how to handle it. I tell her no hitting and then she just cries more.
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  • My son does this, too. It happens most often when he wants something and we can't figure out what it is, and if he's tired/hungry/overstimulated. I've heard its a sensory seeking behavior, so I try to redirect with a little massage or hand him a sensory toy to play with.
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  • DD does it too. She hits her head on the wall when I have her over her changing table sometimes, and sometimes when she is on the floor. I guess it is normal. My friend's daughter used to bite herself whenever she got frustrated and one day she just stopped.
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  • Oh I'm so glad I'm not the only one!! My DS is a shocker for head banging, mainly in his high hair/ pram when it's feeding time (I'm too slow) or he doesn't get his way. I have a permanent towel behind his head in the high chair to aid the "blow", because sometimes I'm surprised he doesn't give himself concussion!
    And I ignore it, basically look away. Any kind of reaction from me makes it worse, the second I turn away he stops doing it.
    Glad to hear things are looking up for you!
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