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Headbanging 1yr old - how worried should I be?

(8 Posts)
fleacircus Fri 05-Nov-10 08:59:36

DD2 is 14mths, very physical, loves climbing, has no sense of danger, and goes into paroxysms of fury when we stop her doing something she wants to do. So, great, determination, tenacity, courage, all wonderful qualities. But she also bashes her head into things (e.g. walls, floors) when she is angry or upset - I would say 'deliberately' but I'm not sure if a 1yr old really knows she has a head. It's been going on about a month, obviously she then gets even more upset. Do you think this falls within the boundaries of 'normal' baby behaviour that will pass, or would you be more worried? Thanks, MNers, in advance.

B52s Fri 05-Nov-10 10:36:12

Oooh yes, DS1 did this from when he could crawl to about 2.6. It was when he was cross or frustrated and his way of letting it out. Happened at home, outside, in Sainsburys, at carparks. He often had a bump on his head and a bruise/scratch. As he got older you could see he's move to a softer floor and then headbang. We just made sure he was safe enough and ignored it. It went on for some time and although it was shocking the first few times, he grew out of it and it became more for effect really. To me, it was normal, to my childminder, it wasn't unusual. DS1 is a stubborn little beggar now (at 3.10) but that is a great life quality. HTH

Flowerbomb Fri 05-Nov-10 17:38:09

Spoke to doctor about constant headbanging. He said it is all for your attention and that there is no way they would hurt themselves.

FWIW I did keep my eye and if it had got to a point of hurting himself I would have stopped it but it stopped eventually anyway after I ignored it for a while. It will pass.

Paulajane67 Sat 06-Nov-10 09:55:27

My very normal 5 year old son did this from when he was very small, younger than one, til sometime over two or three. He would do it whenever he was angry or upset about something and it was really awful and upsetting, not to mention embarrassing, especially at playgroup or tumble tots. He's now totally fine- in the top set at school, lots of friends, happy and just as a 5 year old should be! Please don't worry- I actually forgot he did it til I happened to read your post looking for something unrelated to do with my older daughter.

fleacircus Sun 07-Nov-10 08:58:28

Thank you - that's reassuring. DP and I had thought it might be an attention issue as she also immediately starts climbing the bookshelves as soon as I sit down with DD1 and a book; she's got a sophisticated grasp on what I can't ignore!

I feel quite guilty about it though - she's always been my neglected baby, the way second children often are, I suppose. There's only 20mths between them and I think we've done a good job of minimising DD1's resentment and anxiety but not necessarily at protecting DD2 from feeling jealous or left out.

ducknipples Sun 07-Nov-10 09:25:33

I used to do it when I was a baby! Sometimes I'd just get so frustrated/angry/upset that I couldn't cry, so I'd bang my head on the floor to make the tears come. My mum or any other relative around would have to make a wild dive to get their hand between my forehead and the floor blush

Happy to report I am a perfectly fine 22yo! grin

OnEdge Sun 07-Nov-10 09:29:41

My 16 month old son does it too, so disturbing to watch, I'm glad that you asked because it has put my mind at rest too.

BeaSpellsaLot Sun 07-Nov-10 09:39:55

DS did this from quite an early age until quite recently. He is 3.6 now. We just completely ignore him when he does it.

His old playschool would make an issue of it and I think this prolonged the situation.

He is at preschool now and they ignore it too and it has ceased altogether.

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