Child’s Aggression Associated with New Technology

bluelights article

What is aggression?

Child’s aggression has been widely discussed especially in relation to taming outburst and acting out. Not many parents are, however, aware that aggression is a natural prime emotion that child possess similar to fear, trust and pleasure. Not all emotions are positive but all are needed for healthy functioning. Suppressing any of emotions may be disturbing to development and healthy function of the young person.  Therefore, it is crucial to accept the fact that aggressive behaviors are natural part of children functioning and at certain points of their development there are particularly strong. Accepting child as a whole with good and bad sides will allow development of coherent personality and clear identity. On the other hand, fighting with this emotions may cause adverse effects like lack of acceptance, self-criticism, low self-esteem, or even self-harm.

Aggression is natural and in small amount is related to motivation and success. That does not mean that parents need to allow behaviors which are not fitting within their family wellbeing. Severe aggression needs to be addressed to assure safety of the child and his/her environment.

Sources of child aggression

Roots of aggressive behaviors are not limited to child but usually origin in unfulfilled needs, like need of feeling important, need of independence and need of self-growth. Recent views also explain source of aggression in loss of perception of being of value to others. The negative emotions provoked by these unfulfilled needs result in anger directed towards others.  Such anger may be triggered or escalated by environmental components as well as child’s diet. Sugar, processed food and drinks affect abilities to control, decrease concentration provoke agitation.  

Within environmental factor media and new technology are also recognized as triggers of children aggression, as the media children consume can have adverse influence on their development and functioning. It has not been yet widely research what impact actually technology and new devices have in long term as it is a comparably a new phenomenon. Some signals are alarming, though, and now parents are becoming more aware of the adverse influence of technology on children. Technology nowadays became major source of entertainment, information and socialization for your people. Recent researches are evidencing the negative influence technology has on children below two years. It is linked with slower speech development, delay in motor skills acquisition, worse understanding of the space as well as sleep issues, obesity and bad habits. According to American Pediatric Association there are no real advantages from technology for children below two years. For older children the usage of devices should be limited because of link with hyperactivity, sleep distortion, agitate states, as well as because of the often aggressive and hostile content.

How to help child experiencing aggression.

While most of the time parents are capable to deal with child aggression, at points asking for help might be beneficial to family integrity and happiness. Here family coaching comes into play helping in understanding the antecedents, triggers as well as underlying patterns. Aggressive behaviors need to be assessed taking into account development and age and situation in which child is being raised. Holistic and structural perspective taken by a specialist will facilitate the process of working with a child.

Aggression is related to experiencing of negative emotions like anger and disappointment. Etymology of the word “emotion” which means “energy in motion” already suggests that movement is very important when handling feelings and lack of physical activity blocks natural and healthy emotion flow. When child is experiencing anger or other negative feelings which are related to aggression, he or she should be able to act it out. We can help child by providing safe space for it. And if faced with choice ball or Ipad – the answer comes naturally!

Furthermore, parents must be involved in children tech behaviors. It is also essential how do the parents use technology. Children learn mostly by observation and parents who can balance the usage of new technology will model same to a child resulting in establishing healthy habits for their life. Good practice is to eliminate electronics from certain spaces at home like dinning room and child bedroom. Organize yourself to cultivate chatting and enjoying being together without any devices. And if your child enjoys watching particular show of play a game on tablet, just join him or her and do this together. In such way a healthy family bond is strengthen and activity on preferred device is not presented as escape from reality.